The city of Oakley is looking for a new chief of police after it was announced that Chief Dean Capelletti is out of a job.
On Sunday, Oakley City Manager Joshua McMurray abruptly announced Capelletti’s firing and gave no explanation in a brief statement.
“On November 18, Dean Capelletti was separated from employment as the City of Oakley Police Chief,” the statement read. “As this was a personnel matter, we cannot comment further about his separation. The City’s focus at this time is on searching for a new Police Chief who will uphold the City’s values and effectively lead the outstanding officers and employees who serve in the City of Oakley Police Department.”
When Capelletti was announced as the city’s new police chief in September 2020, he was welcomed by then-City Manager Bryan Montgomery and hailed by Mayor Kevin Romick, who is no longer on the City Council.
“Our community has made it very clear that they expect outstanding police work on every level, beginning with the leadership,” Romick said at the time.
When hired, Capelletti was serving as a captain in La Habra, where he was employed from 2002.
However, whatever welcome the chief, a Bay Area native, received upon arriving had chilled by this September, when City Attorney Derek Cole announced that the chief had been placed on administrative leave. No reason has been given for the action.
On Monday, Mayor Sue Higgins said “At this time we are focused on the search for a new police chief.”
McMurray and Cole had no comment on Monday.
Capelletti had replaced longtime police Chief Eric Christensen who retired in June 2020.