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Humboldt Holding Up

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"It came as a surprise when Eureka Police Chief Steve Watson — who has been with the Eureka Police Department for nearly 17 years, the last four of them as chief — announced late last month that he would be retiring at the end November.

“While my fire has not diminished, it is time for me to take a restful step back and reflect with pride on a career well spent, even as I look forward with enthusiasm to the next adventure,” Watson wrote in his retirement announcement.

With only a couple of days left in his tenure, Watson was kind enough to join this week’s episode of Humboldt Holding Up — the Outpost‘s little podcast that could — for a sort of exit interview before he enters into the next chapter of his life. Topics discussed with Watson include:

  • The recent texting scandal and Watson’s feelings about the imminent investigation report
  • How the EPD and policing in Eureka was impacted by the pandemic
  • The current difficulties of hiring and retaining police officers
  • Evolving changes in attitudes and practices in policing and the “last gasp” of the old bastion
  • The difficulties of addressing the “tragic triad” of homelessness, mental illness and addiction, and why Watson supports augmenting police work with mental health crisis intervention specialists
  • Watson’s proudest accomplishments and his appreciation for many people he’s worked with
  • More!"