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Melanie Bevan serves final day at St. Pete PD; heading to Bradenton to serve as top cop

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

Friday was Assistant Chief Melanie Bevan’s final day with the St. Pete Police Department. Bevan announced last month she accepted the top spot with Bradenton Police as their chief.

“Today will be my last Facebook post with St. Petersburg Police Department as I was recently named Chief of Police for the City of Bradenton,” Bevan wrote on her Facebook page. “I’d like to thank all who supported me throughout the years with SPPD.”

Bevan had been considered for St. Pete Police Chief before Anthony Holloway was hired and was considered a favorite. Her candidacy for St. Pete’s top cop was supported by St. Pete City Council. However, St. Pete Mayor Rick Kriseman scratched the whole lot of candidates including Bevan in favor of hiring Holloway.

Bevan has been with the agency for 30 years. She has served as assistant chief since 1986.

“Although I’m looking forward to the next chapter of my career, I will miss all the wonderful people I’ve met along the way,” Bevan wrote. “As always, stay safe St. Pete.”

Bevan earned a Bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from St. Leo University in 1997 after being on the force more more than ten years. She went on to earn a Master’s degree in public administration from Troy State in 2001 and her Doctor of Education in organizational leadership from Argosy University in 2011.

She’s replacing Michael Radzilowski as Bradenton’s top cop. He announced in April he was retiring after 45 years in law enforcement.

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Janelle Irwin has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in the Tampa Bay area since 2003. She also hosts a weekly political talk show on WMNF Community radio. Janelle formerly served as the sole staff reporter for WMNF News and previously covered news for Patch.com and various local neighborhood newsletters. Her work has been featured in the New York Daily News, Free Speech Radio News and Florida Public Radio and she's been interviewed by radio stations across the nation for her coverage of the 2012 Republican National Convention. Janelle is a diehard news junkie who isn't afraid to take on big names in local politics including Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, the dirty business of trash and recycling in St. Pete and the ongoing Pier debacle. Her work as a reporter and radio host has earned her two WMNF awards including News Volunteer of the Year and Public Affairs Volunteer of the Year. Janelle is also the devoted mother to three brilliant and beautiful daughters who are a constant source of inspiration and occasional blogging fodder. To contact, email janelle@floridapolitics.com.

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