City Announces Caitlin Pope as Interim Chief of Police

Matt Patterson submitted his resignation as Chief of Police, effective November 24, 2023. Patterson has served the City of Westminster since 2015 and as Chief since 2021. The City of Westminster extends its appreciation to him for his service and wishes him the best moving forward.

At its November 14, 2023, meeting, City Council unanimously appointed Caitlin Pope as Interim Chief of Police. She will be sworn in on November 15. Pope has served the City of Westminster since March of 2021 and was quickly promoted to Sergeant in 2022. Chief Pope has been in law enforcement since 2015, as a Patrol Officer for four years with Oconee County Sherriff’s Office and as a corporal with the Town of West Union Police Department.

Chief Pope is a lifelong resident of Oconee County. Pope holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Services from Anderson University and is pursuing a master’s degree in Criminal Justice from Columbia College. Pope has completed certifications in Crime Scene and Investigations.

Assisting in the transition is Lt. John Merck, who will remain in his role as Lieutenant. Lt. Merck has over six years of experience with the City of Westminster and will continue to provide support to our officers and Chief during this transitionary period.

The City plans to conduct a nationwide search for a new Chief of Police. Additional details will be made available soon.

Chief Pope says that she, “looks forward to further serving the City of Westminster in this new capacity by continuing a tradition of strong community policing and providing a safe environment for citizens.”

Download the Press Release here.