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Chief Lovell Taps Mike Frome to Serve as Deputy Chief

by Alex Zielinski

Mike Frome

Mike Frome PPB

Leadership within the Portland Police Bureau (PPB) is undergoing another reshuffle: Chief Chuck Lovell has appointed former Assistant Chief Mike Frome to be his second in command as deputy chief. Frome, who has led the bureau’s Services Branch since July 2020, replaces outgoing Deputy Chief Chris Davis, who has accepted a job as the police chief of Green Bay, Wisconsin.

Prior to leading PPB’s Services Branch, which oversees the bureau’s training, records, and personnel departments, Frome was a commander in charge of PPB’s now-dissolved Transit Division and worked as a detective focused on burglaries. Frome joined PPB in 1999.

As deputy chief, Frome will be responsible for overseeing the bureau’s three branches—Services, Operations, and Investigations—and the assistant chiefs that lead them. Assistant Chief Mike Leasure, who currently oversees PPB’s Operations Branch, will fill Frome’s role leading the Services Branch. Lovell has appointed Brian Ossenkop, a North Precinct commander, to serve as the new assistant chief in charge of PPB’s Operations Branch. Ossenkop has been with PPB since 1994. In 2009, Ossenkop received discipline for allegedly popping open a beer can while driving a PPB patrol car in Central Oregon in front of his subordinates. More recently, Ossenkop defended the use of force used against protesters in 2020 by officers he oversaw, despite an internal investigation finding the use of force to be out of PPB policy. DOJ attorneys criticized Ossenkop’s defense in a recent letter to the City of Portland, using it as an example of PPB managers not following their own discipline guidelines.

Assistant Chief Jami Resch (and onetime police chief) will continue to lead the bureau’s Investigations Branch.

As deputy chief, Davis took on a strong leadership role at the bureau—a position that had PPB and City Hall staff often referring to him as the “shadow chief.” It’s unclear if this is a role Frome intends to fill.

In a press statement, Lovell said he’s sure Frome “will be able to step into the role of Deputy Chief smoothly during this time of great organizational challenge and critical staffing shortage facing PPB.”

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