Smiths Grove Police Department gets new police chief

SMITHS GROVE, Ky. – Smiths Grove Police Department is welcoming a new police chief and saying farewell to another.

Former Chief Johnny Vance has retired from the force after working in law enforcement for 22 years.

“It’s bittersweet. This is really the only job I have had since I was 21 and so, you know, when you do that for half your life it is hard to say ‘goodbye.’ But it was time. It was a decision that I didn’t take lightly. I thought about it, prayed about it and it was just the right time for me,” said Vance.

Now, a new chief has stepped in to fill the position, Chief Jason Franks.

“The city and myself knew what we wanted. We didn’t know who but what. After the process, Jason was the front-runner. He was outstanding and he is going to do a great job. I am really happy with the decision and he is going to do a great job,” said Vance.

Franks is a former Bowling Green Police Officer and took Vance’s position in January.

He says he is looking forward to all that Smiths Grove has to offer him and is thankful for Vance and many others who have assisted him in this transition.

“Chief Vance did a really great job of updating the department when he came here a few years ago. I want to continue that trend. Some of the things we are looking at is getting a computer in the car, updating some of our record keeping system, maybe revamp and look at different ways to organize our evidence and things of that nature. We are always looking to stay current in our technology and in the way we are police so we can better assist the citizens of Smith’s Grove,” said Franks.

A retirement celebration for Vance will be held at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 24, at Smiths Grove City Hall.