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Costa Mesa police fills captain vacancy

The Costa Mesa Police Department has selected a captain to fill a position left vacant for more than a year.

Lt. Allen Huggins was chosen from six internal candidates, according to Police Chief Tom Gazsi. He will share second-in-command duties with the department’s other captain, Les Gogerty.

Huggins is a 25-year veteran of the force. He will be leaving his position in the Professional Standards Unit, which deals with internal affairs, Gazsi said.

Huggins’ promotion takes effect Sunday, as will other changes, Lt. Bryan Glass announced Thursday.


The position has remained open since January 2011, when Capt. Ron Smith retired after being put on leave in November 2010 amid allegations of absenteeism.

“I’m confident he will serve the community and organization very well into the future,” Gazsi said.

Newport Beach Police Chief Jay Johnson said in an email that he has met with and has high regard for the candidates who were running for the captain position.

“I am impressed with them all and think CMPD has a strong bench,” Johnson said. “Chief Gazsi has made his first big appointment in forming his management team, and I think he made a good selection in Lt. Allen Huggins. Lt. Huggins is a very experienced and articulate police manager.”


Lt. Tim Schennum will take over in the Professional Standards Unit, and will also be responsible for training, recruitment and public affairs, Glass said.

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