New WA police commissioner leaves ‘a lasting legacy’ in Canberra

After a few years leading the newly formed Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission, Western Australian cop Chris Dawson is heading home to lead the state’s police force under a new government that is focused on squeezing big savings from the public sector.

Dawson was a WA police officer for about 38 years, across both regional and metropolitan areas, and spent 10 as deputy commissioner in charge of responses to terrorism and serious organised crime. He was the inaugural principal of the state’s police academy at Joondalup in Perth’s northern suburbs, and was responsible for the state police force’s biggest ever security operation, around the 2011 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

“Police alone cannot prevent crime and harm, so jointly building and maintaining trust with the community and alliances with our partner agencies will be central to my approach as commissioner of police,” Dawson said in a press conference this week.

Moving to common systems

Speaking of partner agencies, the WA Department of Fire and Emergency Services has just finalised a $7 million deal with Motorola to buy the same computer-aided dispatch system that has been used by the police for the past couple of years.

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