Littleton announces pick for new police chief

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Denver captain will lead force

By Ramsey Scott

Littleton has a new chief of police. 

On Friday, the city announced that Denver police Capt. Douglas Stephens will be the city’s new police chief. Stephens had been with the Denver Police Department since 1991 and most recently served as captain of the gang unit.

The Littleton position came open earlier this year when Heather Coogan announced her retirement on Jan. 18. Division Cmdr. Gene Enley had been acting as the interim chief since April, when Coogan’s retirement took effect.

Out of the 45 people that applied for the position, Stephens was among five finalists interviewed by the City Council and a citizen panel, along with two other search committees. 

“This was an impressive group of law enforcement professionals, but Doug Stephens was the unanimous choice of each of the four interview panels,” City Manager Michael Penny said in a news release. “He understands that I am looking for a human-focused leader who knows law enforcement and has the skills to meet the community’s needs. I want Doug to move the department forward by bringing everyone together as a cohesive unit.”

Stephens has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wyoming and a master’s degree in criminal justice from the University of Colorado at Denver. He also graduated from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Academy.

“The Littleton Police Department has a reputation as being one of the best in Colorado,” Stephens said. “I am excited at the opportunity to lead this exemplary group of professionals. I can’t wait to get started.”

Stephens should be on the job by early May, according to the city. His annual salary will start at $130,000.