New police chief vows to rebuild community trust in its police department

Mayor Dick Heaton congratulates Kim Kraeszig after swearing her in as Bardstown’s new police chief and its first female chief.


Nelson County Gazette / WBRT Radio

Tuesday, Sept. 12, 2017 — Bardstown’s new police chief was sworn-in and received a standing ovation from the audience and the members of the city council as Mayor Dick Heaton completed the oath of office.

Councilwoman Kecia Copeland poses for a photo with Bardstown’s new police Chief Kim Kraeszig.

The audience who cheered Kraeszig’s official naming as chief included members of her immediate family, her extended family, and her police family, including former beat partner, Shepherdsville Police Chief Rick McCubbin.

After the ceremony, Kraeszig thanked the selection committee for putting their trust in her ability to serve as the city’s next police chief.

“For the community members who don’t know who I am, I come as a professional with dignity and integrity,” she said. “I’m going to work on building that trust that’s been lost by some of our community members.”

Kraeszig said her desire was to have the safest community and the finest police department in the state.

Councilwoman Kecia Copeland praised Kraeszig for already getting out on the street and meeting members of the community.

“I’m thankful that once again, Bardstown has made history, and we also have a positive move forward toward the future,” she said.

Kim Kraeszig meets with Joe Prewitt, director of Nelson County EMS and Councilman John Kelley prior to the start of the city council meeting.

Prior to the start of the meeting Kraeszig greeting members of her family, friends as they arrived and posed for photos with family, friends and members of the council.

Kraeszig, who has worked 23 years in law enforcement, recently retired as assistant police chief of the Louisville Metro Police Department. As assistant chief, she was the number three person in the department’s command staff and she directed and managed 950 LMPD employees, including nine associate police chiefs.

Prior to her promotion to assistant chief in 2013, Kraeszig served five years as Patrol Major in the LMPD’s fourth division.

Kraeszig comes from a family of law enforcement professionals.

Her father, Wayne Kessinger, has a 45-year career in law enforcement and is currently the chief deputy at the Floyd County (Ind.) Sheriff’s Office; her brother, Todd Kessinger, is a major with Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD); and her oldest son is an LMPD officer who was unable to attend the ceremony due to his work duties.


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