Fairfield police chief retiring after 30 years

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FAIRFIELD -

Fairfield's police chief will retire later this month after a little more than 30 years in the department.

Chief Gary MacNamara is leaving to become the executive director of public safety and governmental affairs at Sacred Heart University.

MacNamara started out as a patrolman in 1988 and has been chief for the past eight years.

During his time in the department, MacNamara worked in every division.

In 2002, he negotiated the release of students and a professor being held hostage at Fairfield University by a man who claimed he had a bomb.

MacNamara was involved in a serious car accident four years ago that left him injuries he still struggles with.

"I had a choice in that moment of time, I could either continue to do what I love to do or say that the effect of the accident prevented me from doing that," he says. " “I chose to move forward and continue to do what I'm doing."

MacNamara credits his training, the department's leadership, and support from the community for putting him on the path to become chief.

"It's an emotional decision that I toyed with and tormented from," he says.

MacNamara will be retiring on Oct. 26.

The next police chief will be selected by the Police Commission with the approval of the first selectman.

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