After more than a month of searching for a new Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station captain, a selection has been made. Todd Deeds, a lieutenant from the department’s East Los Angeles Station, begins his new post Sunday, officials said.
Deeds replaces former Capt. Chris Blasnek, who was promoted to commander by Sheriff Alex Villanueva in January and now oversees the South Patrol Division comprising the Carson, Cerritos, Lakewood, Lomita, Norwalk and Pico Rivera patrol stations.
Lt. Mark Slater has served as interim captain of the Crescenta Valley Station since Blasnek’s departure. Slater confirmed in an email Wednesday that Deeds’ selection had been announced internally on Tuesday.
“I’m happy for Captain Deeds,” Slater said by email Wednesday. “I hear good things about him, so I know the station will be in good hands.”
Slater, who had at one point been in the running for the captain position, also announced his plans to retire sometime later this year after 10 years at the Crescenta Valley Station and more than 33 years with the Sheriff’s Department.
In a May 1 email, he notified members of the public his name had not been put forward as a potential candidate for captain. On Wednesday, he said he’d come to enjoy the community and its support of the department.
“I will miss both the station personnel and the community members whom I have worked with over my career,” he wrote. “However, I am looking forward to retirement and my wife and I plan to travel, camp, and play golf.”
La Cañada Flintridge city officials and representatives from La Crescenta and the office of Supervisor Kathryn Barger joined in the search for a new captain last month, interviewing a spate of candidates provided by the Sheriff’s Department.
A five-member interview panel reviewed several finalists and made recommendations to La Cañada City Manager Mark Alexander, who conducted his own second-round interviews and put forth his recommendation to Sheriff Alex Villanueva.
Deeds, 52, previously served as a lieutenant with the department’s Special Victims Bureau, which investigates allegations of sexual and domestic crimes, child and elderly abuse, among other crimes.
La Cañada Mayor Len Pieroni, who sat on the interview panel, said each candidate had an impressive background and would have been a good choice for captain. Among them, he recalled Deeds as being very engaging and informed about what resources could be employed in the community.
“He knew all of the issues communities like ours experience and ways to mitigate them,” Pieroni said. “[And] he seemed to want to be involved in the community and in our events — I think he’s going to be good.”