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Commander Jason Clawson Becomes the City’s Police Chief

Published on Monday, May 2, 2022 | 5:00 am
Interim Police Chief Jason Clawson

Pasadena Police Commander Jason Clawson became the city’s police chief on Monday.

“I am honored, yet humbled, to begin this journey as the Interim Chief of Police for the great City of Pasadena,” Clawson told Pasadena Now. 

“I would like to thank Chief Cheryl Moody for her three decades in law enforcement, her accomplishments and the paths she has paved for all to follow. Many cheers to her for a long and successful career. As we move forward, our departmental goals remain contemporary as we continue to focus on reducing crime, maintaining order, providing hope, and calming fears. This can be done through strategic communication, applying logic, some common sense, and a true concern for people. We need to connect deeper in the community and build on safer neighborhoods through collaborative partnerships with community-based organizations. One of my personal goals is striving to maintain my empathy as we collectively move the department into the future, in a city and community we all love.”

Clawson, who has 30 years of experience with the department, plans to address the department on Monday.

Under former Chief John Perez, he served as the department’s press information officer where he directed and coordinated the activities within the office of the police chief, including audits and inspections and the on-going review of policy and procedures.

Perez retired earlier this year and the city is expected to soon post the job. However the position will not be filled until the City Council chooses the next City Manager. In turn, the City Manager will select the next police chief.

If both candidates are chosen from outside Pasadena, it will mark the first time an outside City Manager chose an outside police chief since 2010 when Michael Beck, who came from Claremont, picked Santa Monica Deputy Chief Phillip Sanchez.

The City Council is expected to begin interviewing City Manager candidates in June. Clawson will hold the position until the next chief is chosen.

Last year, City Manager Cynthia Kurtz announced that Clawson and Deputy Chief Cheryl Moody would each rotate into the position as Interim Chief. Moody served from January until last week.

Clawson served as the Project Director of a $2.5 million dollar grant from the Bureau of State and Community Corrections focusing on reintegration efforts of previously incarcerated community members returning to society. He participated in the development of goals, objectives, and key performance indicators for assigned divisional functions as well developing and administering divisional budgets, to include homeless and mental health initiatives, procurement of technology, and investigations.

Clawson is a veteran of the U.S. Navy and has 30 years of experience in municipal law enforcement operations, working in many ranks across various divisions to include Patrol Operations and Investigations.

He also led a Safe Streets Task Force while assigned as a Task Force Supervisor with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, focusing on the transnational gang problem. Clawson has coordinated jurisdictional Mutual Aid, Critical Incident Response Team operations, and focused on problem locations through community policing efforts in high crime zones.

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