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"Tampa airport police chief and deputy chief step down"
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Tampa airport police chief and deputy chief step down
By Justine Griffin
The Tampa Bay (FL) Times
The director of public safety and his deputy chief at the Tampa International
Airport are stepping down suddenly, according to letters of retirement and
resignation filed with airport officials.
Paul Sireci, the director of public safety at the Tampa International Airport,
is retiring after 44 years of employment in law enforcement. It is unclear why
Sireci, who has been the director of safety at the airport for the last four
years and served as police chief at the airport for more than a decade, is
"The chief decided to retire after a long and distinguished career, including
14 years at the airport. He will leave big shoes to fill and has agreed to stay
on board until we complete a national search for his replacement," said Janet
Zink, a spokeswoman for the Tampa airport.
Sireci's deputy chief, Ralph Anthony, also announced in a letter that he will
resign on March 3. The airport will not refill his position, Zink confirmed.
"Going forward, our two police captains will report directly to the chief of
police," she said. "The goal is to streamline the department and improve
Anthony began his career at the Tampa airport in November 2015.
The letters of retirement and resignation come after the airport conducted an
annual police department employee survey, which indicated some issues over
morale and management. The October survey, conducted by a third party company,
Workplace Dynamics, showed that police department staff felt that there was
more negativity in the workplace compared to employees surveyed in other
departments at the airport.
Zink noted that overall scores did improve year over year.
Sireci also faced some scrutiny late last year when photos from 2011 of his
grandchildren resurfaced on his personal Facebook page. The photos showed the
children holding military style rifles at an airport police training facility.
Zink said that Sireci did not violate any state laws or airport policies and
procedures at that time.
Sireci briefly served as acting director of operations for the Hillsborough
County Aviation Authority in 2014. Prior to joining the Tampa airport, he
worked as chief of public safety at the Memphis International Airport Police
Department and was a captain with the Naples Police Department.
"It is with mixed emotions that I am notifying you of my intention to retire,"
Sireci wrote in his retirement letter. "I will miss the excitement and pride
that we all feel with the completion of the master plan projects. At the same
time I know that Annabelle and I have prepared for this next phase of our lives
and the new opportunities that will come in retirement."
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