Mayor Mitchell extends New Bedford Police Chief’s contract


“NEW BEDFORD – Mayor Jon Mitchell and Police Chief Paul Oliveira have agreed on a new three-year contract that keeps the head of the Police Department to 2027.

“Despite a decrease in police manpower, under Chief Oliveira’s leadership, violent crime in New Bedford has continued to decline with a 58% drop over the past decade,” Mayor Mitchell said. “Chief Oliveira has worked hard to build trust between the department and residents, which will set us up for still more improvement in public safety.”

“It is a great honor and privilege to accept this new contract as I continue to serve as the Chief of Police for the City of New Bedford,” Chief Oliveira said. “I am deeply grateful to Mayor Mitchell for this extended opportunity and his steadfast trust in my leadership. Serving this incredible community is a responsibility I hold with the utmost respect and dedication. I will continue to prioritize safety, transparency, and community engagement. I am equally fortunate to remain a member of this valued team and work alongside all of the amazing men and women who are its foundation. To them, I say, I will continue to support you, advocate for you, and ensure that you have the resources to continue to perform your duties safely and effectively. I look forward to continuing our work together in an environment of mutual respect and trust, to ensure the safety and well-being of all New Bedford residents.”

Under Chief Oliveira’s leadership, violent crime has continued to decline. According to the FBI, the city has experienced declines in the incidents of rape (-34%), robbery (-61%) and aggravated assault (-62%). Property crime also decreased 55% over the last 10 years with sharp drops in arson (-68%), burglary (-71%), and larceny (-57%).

Having grown up in New Bedford, Chief Oliveira began his career with the NBPD in 1992 as a uniform patrol officer before transferring to the Narcotics Division. He was promoted to Sergeant in 2000. Oliveira served as a Sergeant in Uniform Patrol, Detective Division, and the Narcotics Division. He was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant in 2007, and served as Commander of the Professional Standards Division internal affairs), and as Commander of the Narcotics Division.

In 2012, Oliveira was promoted to the rank of Captain, and led the Professional Standards Division before his appointment as Deputy Chief of Police in 2016 and Chief of Police in 2021.

Chief Oliveira holds a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Anna Maria College. He also graduated from Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police program.

Chief Oliveira’s new contract runs through June 15, 2027.”

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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