City of Berea Mayor Bruce Fraley announced the hiring of a new chief of police on Friday, revealing that Walter “Eric” Scott, 35, will take over the department in October.
Scott comes to Berea after serving 10 years in the University of Kentucky Police Department, where he rose to the rank of lieutenant. He provided security for the UK Athletic Department, including its head coaches, and he aided the U.S. Secret Service, including President Trump’s security detail, officials said.
Berea City Administrator David Gregory, who recently wrapped up 10 years as Berea’s police chief, said Scott made a strong impression on the search committee.
“He’s a very impressive person, and I think he will make a great police chief,” said Gregory. “He has a lot of good ideas that will be beneficial to the city. I look forward to working with him.”
The search committee was comprised of Gregory, former Berea City Council members Glenn Jennings and Virgil Burnside, former City Administrator Randy Stone, Berea Independent School District Superintendent Diane Hatchett, Mayor Bruce Fraley and Berea Human Resources Director Jennifer Renfroe.
Mayor Fraley cited Scott’s resume as just one of the factors in his selection. Scott earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information, and a Master of Arts degree in Organizational Leadership from Western Kentucky University. Additionally, Fraley noted Scott is a graduate of the FBI Academy.
“We look forward to Eric joining our city staff in mid-October, and I encourage all citizens and city staff to join me in congratulating our new chief and welcoming him to Berea,” Fraley said.
Football fans may recall that Scott played for the University of Kentucky from 2003-2007. After playing for the Wildcats, Scott signed on with the Tennessee Titans in 2008 as an undrafted free agent.
In an interview published by the University of Kentucky, Scott said he saw law enforcement as a new opportunity after football.
Scott told UKNow there are important lessons he brings from football.
“You have to stay fit. Teamwork is involved. There are a lot of characteristics in athletics that are similar to policing,” Scott told UKNow. “I will say it does take a lot of patience. In football, every play lasts about three-and-a-half seconds. So, if you are frustrated, you have three-and-a-half seconds to take out that frustration. In law enforcement, you have to remain patient and professional and understand no matter the situation, you have to remain cool. That’s one of the differences from sports.”