MADISON, Ala. — Madison Police Chief David Jernigan will retire in mid-January, the police department said Tuesday.
“It has been a highlight of my career to lead the men & women of the Madison Police Department who have consistently served with honor, integrity & dedication to the rule of law & the US Constitution,” Jernigan said in a statement. “They are the best, brightest & bravest in our community.”
Chief Jernigan says he knew from a young age he wanted to work in law enforcement.
“My dad was a police officer, a deputy sheriff down in our hometown in central Florida and I was in the eighth grade and reading his textbooks and reading his notes from the police academy,” says Jernigan.
Jernigan’s law enforcement career also includes work as an FBI special agent from 1984-2003. from 2003-2013 he worked with the FBI in its Hazardous Devices Operations Center and Critical Incident Response Group.
“I always said some day if the opportunity arises and the sun and moon line up correctly I would like to lead the men and women of the police department in Madison,” recalls Jernigan.
During the time Jernigan was Chief, the Madison Police Department received CALEA accreditation, the gold standard in public safety.
“We’re the 9th municipality in Alabama. We’re part of 5% of over 18,000 law enforcement agencies that are around in the United States,” said Jernigan.
Madison Mayor Paul Finley says the city appreciates Jernigan’s service.
“We first and foremost thank Chief Jernigan for his 41 years of law enforcement service, the last three of which were in Madison as our Chief of Police. During this time the department accomplished CALEA accreditation, the gold standard in public safety, and prioritized community policing by engaging our residents. We greatly appreciate and thank Chief on these accomplishments and wish him well in his well-deserved retirement,” said Finley.