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Captain Justin Danpier welcomes new Interim Police Chief Mike Scott. /Laura Austin Photo

Scott sworn in as RPD Interim Police Chief

By LAURA AUSTIN News Review Staff Writer–

Interim Ridgecrest Police Chief Michael Scott, sworn in August 21, spent the weekend volunteering with the city to prepare for Tropical Storm Hilary.

Scott will fill in for Chief Jed McLaughlin, who is on medical leave for approximately six months.

According to City Manager Ron Strand, Scott was among the first to come to mind for the Interim Chief position.

Scott has an extensive background in law enforcement. Scott’s career began at the Riverside Sheriff’s Office Academy in 1982 and was Employed by Ridgecrest Police Department in March 1983.

He worked in the Patrol, Traffic, and Crime Suppression Unit and taught the DARE program at Burroughs High School before being promoted to Sergeant.

Scott later joined the Kern County Sheriff’s Office in 2001, where he advanced further and was promoted to Senior Deputy, Sergeant and Lieutenant.  He retired from Law Enforcement in March 2015 and started a new career as a Security Specialist at NAWS China Lake.

He was employed as the China Lake Police Department Chief of Police in 2017 for 2 1⁄2 years, then transferred into a site security management position in July 2019 to assist in the devastating earthquake recovery efforts, working with a team that coordinated construction efforts for top secret buildings that had been damaged. He retired in July 2022 and recently returned to Ridgecrest Police Department, working part-time as a Background Investigator.

Now back in the saddle, Scott says his goals will be to energize and inspire the great team of men and women who work here who are sworn and non-sworn. “We have a fantastic staff, a great volunteer staff of reserves, And I’m looking forward to working with them,” he said.