Police chief retires after 34 years of service


After protecting and serving the people for more than 34 years, Bowling

Green City Police Chief Brad Conner will retire his badge.

Conner began his police career at the age of 19, protecting and serving

different communities. He served in a small village called Fort

Shawnee, moving his way up to work as a campus police officer. Now,

he will retire with the City of Bowling Green.

Conner, who comes from a background of law enforcement, said he

will really miss working with the City.

“My father was a part time police officer, my mother was a full-time police dispatcher. So my entire life I been surrounded by law enforcement, it’s all I ever known,” w said.

With an extensive list of accomplishments: Master of Public Administration, graduate from F.B.I National Academy, “Weapons of Mass Destruction and Law Enforcement Protective Measures,” and School of Police Staff and Command just to name a few, Conner said he’s been blessed with the City of Bowling Green throughout his career.

Conner flashed back on his highlights of his career. It was two cases that he worked on that he said he’ll remember the most.

His first memorable case was in 1988. During that period, Conner was working undercover in narcotics. “At the time I had long hair, a beard and two earrings. You can still see the holes there roughly,” he said, as he points to his left ear.

As he worked undercover in narcotics, he recalled the time three drug dealers put a contract out on him causing him to be moved out of town for a couple ofweeks.

“They decided they wanted to put a contract out on me for me to be killed and the FBI got involved in that case. Those individuals were arrested for conspiracy to commit murder and drug trafficking,” Conner said.

His second case involved the murder of a 4-year-old boy.

“The 4-year-old boy was enticed into an apartment for candy, lived in the neighborhood, was sexually assaulted and murdered. That is certainly a case that I will never forget,” Conner said.

As the chief prepares to pass the throne down to Deputy Tony Hetrick, Hetrick said he’s learned a lot from Conner.

“I’m going to miss thatinstitutional knowledge, just his ability to work a problem through and his experience, that’s a valuable one and I’m sure going to miss that,” Hetrick said.

Throughout his career, Conner said his time spent working in law enforcement was favorable. He was able to obtain two degrees, while working full-time.

“I’ve been fortunate with the city of Bowling Green throughout my career, and actually for all of our officers, they’ve been tremendous with providing us with educational opportunities. Had I been at another agency, I wouldn’t have received all of the opportunities that I received here,” Conner said.

As he continues to take on new journeys in life like traveling and preparing his son for college, he wants Bowling Green to know that he’s appreciative for the love and support throughout his career.

“I’ve been blessed to have people who have been supportive of me throughout those 34 plus years that I’ve had here. It’s going to be tough to leave,” Conner said.

Hetrick will serve as the active chief for the city of Bowling Green, a position he was already introduced to when Conner underwent surgery.

“I feel pretty well prepared to take on anything. Chief Conner has always been not just a friend to me but he’s been a mentor, a leader, somebody who was here on my first day,I’m happy he’s moving on to other things,” Hetrick said.

Conner said, “I think we as an agency have done a great job preparing our next generation of leaders.Tony Hetrick will do a great job as the active chief and if he’s given the opportunity as the police chief, the future is bright here.”

There will be a meet and greet for Chief Conner Friday, June 5, from 2-4 p.m. at Grumpy Dave’s in downtown, Bowling Green.