Fort Worth

Department Says Fort Worth Chief Fitzgerald Hasn't Accepted Any Job Offers

Baltimore mayor tells local media she's still vetting candidates

The city of Fort Worth may soon be looking for a new chief of police.

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price told NBC 5 Friday morning that Chief Joel Fitzgerald was leaving, saying "It appears he has taken the police chief spot in Baltimore. He's done a good job in Fort Worth and I wish him the best in this new position."

A spokesperson for the Fort Worth Police Department later contradicted that statement, saying, "At this time Chief Fitzgerald has not accepted any job offer."

Following the department's statement, Price's office clarified that she has not received a letter of resignation from the chief but that she gave an "appropriate response" to NBC 5's question about his future.

Whether the announcement of Fitzgerald's departure was premature or simply incorrect is unclear.

Meanwhile, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh, according to The Baltimore Sun, said Friday she was still vetting candidates and had not made a decision on the city's next commissioner.

Fitzgerald joined the Fort Worth Police Department as chief in October 2015. He is a member of the Major Cities Chief's Association and International Association of Chiefs of Police.

Before arriving in Fort Worth, Fitzgerald was chief in Allentown, Pennsylvania in 2013 and chief in Missouri City, Texas in 2009. He started at the Philadelphia Police Department.

Last month, Fitzgerald led the department while they dealt with the loss of fallen officer Garrett Hull. Hull was the only officer to die in the line of duty during Fitzgerald's time with the department.

Check back for updates on this developing story. NBC 5's Tim Ciesco and Deborah Ferguson contributed to this report.

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