University of Virginia Chief of Police Tommye Sutton has resigned after a little more than a year on the job. He has been replaced in the interim by former Charlottesville Police Chief Tim Longo.
Sutton’s resignation took effect Sept. 27, the university said. He had been on paid administrative leave since at least the first week of September.
University officials declined to provide Sutton’s resignation letter or discuss the reason for his departure.
Longo’s appointment takes effect immediately, and he is expected to serve for about 12 months. His duties include all of those of the previous chief, according to the university. Those duties include a seat on the Emergency Communications Center’s managing board. His salary will be $190,000, with a sign-on bonus of $10,000 and a potential performance bonus of $15,000, according to his employment agreement.
In an interview Tuesday morning attended by a university spokesman, Longo said he was first asked to consider the position about a week ago.
“I saw this as a really great opportunity,” he said, adding that he felt he could work well with President Jim Ryan and other university leaders.
He said he told department staff Tuesday morning that his first priority would be the nuts and bolts of everyday police work, but that he intends to sit down with each employee in the coming days.
“I know these people; I know them professionally and some of them I know personally, and those that I don’t know, I look forward to meeting,” he said.
Longo said he is not currently aware of any other staff placed on administrative leave or of any ongoing issues related to Sutton’s departure.
Longo has 35 years of experience in law enforcement, most recently as Charlottesville’s chief, a position he held for 15 years before retiring in 2016.
Among high-profile cases he handled in Charlottesville was the nationwide manhunt for Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr., who eventually was convicted of murder for the deaths of UVa second-year student Hannah Graham and Virginia Tech student Morgan Harrington.
In 2016, Longo joined the faculty of UVa’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies to help launch a master’s degree in public safety administration.