Provide Exceptional Service– We value being responsive to the community’s needs and seek to earn the public’s confidence and satisfaction with fair and impartial services that are highly competent, professional, and accessible to all.
Act with Integrity – We value a commitment to the nobility of policing, and the ethical standards of the organization and our profession. We are trustworthy, reliable and committed to doing the right thing, the right way, for the right reason.
Treat Others with Respect – We value approaching every contact with a guardian mindset that embodies treating people with dignity and respect, giving them a voice and listening, being impartial and fair, and building trust in our interactions with the public and our colleagues.
As your Police Chief, it is an honor to lead this department of incredible public servants, women and men who day in and day out serve the people of Mountain View with honor and integrity.
I realize I come to this position at a pivotal point in the history of law enforcement. Crucial conversations around race, equity, and inclusion can no longer, and should no longer, be ignored. Communities across this country are asking of themselves and their law enforcement agencies: ‘How do we change the course of the future for the better?’
The future of policing in any community is now. What that looks like, what is done well, and what can be improved, will vary – no one size fits all. But, I am proud to be a leader of an agency that prides itself on progressive policing, that believes that its core mission is ‘excellence at every opportunity.’ We are here to serve you, our residents. We are here to protect you, to answer your call when you need help, to be there on good days and bad ones. That is what it means to be a department that believes in community policing. The safety and wellbeing of our community is our highest priority. And to ensure that is taken care of, we must excel in as many touch points as possible to be what you ask of us – the truest representation of you.
We are built upon the bedrock of community first, that we are better together. That belief has carried us through the toughest year of our lives with the battle against COVID-19, and it has been what defines us and sets us apart as a community in its truest form – being there for one another. We cannot shape the future alone. We must do it, together.
I am also proud to know that we, as a department, believe in ensuring that all members of our community have the right access and care for whatever their needs may be, be it for mental health, food, shelter, or other care. We will continue our partnership that truly requires all aspects of our community, and it is one that we, as a police department, will be proud to be a part of, in whatever role our department can take that would best serve all in our community. Our goal, always, is to be able to approach any situation with the utmost care and consideration for any individual, and to ensure that the safety and wellbeing of those around them are also addressed.
While we are at the precipice of so much positive change for the future, when I look back on my 25 years here in Mountain View, I can say, definitively, that there is no better place to serve. There is no better place to call home. I have watched this department adapt, adjust, and evolve at a rate that is phenomenal. To know that the women and men of this department can pivot, and can have such servants’ hearts, that they see you, hear you, and believe in you, is something for which I am not only grateful, but I know that I am blessed to see every day.
I look forward to our future, together. I look forward to being your Police Chief, and I look forward to bringing Mountain View ever forward with you.
Chris is an award-winning advocate for transparency and community connection with extensive public safety experience from over 30 years in law enforcement. As Police Chief, he leads department operations and is dedicated to efforts in leadership development, community engagement, and maintaining MVPD’s role as a progressive law enforcement organization in the 21st century. In 2020, he led the City of Mountain View’s cross-departmental crisis communications team to keep the community informed during the initial months of the COVID-19 crisis.
A native of the San Mateo County Peninsula who followed his public safety calling in high school, Chris first volunteered as a police explorer for the Foster City Police Department in 1990 and later worked for that department as a Community Service Officer and per diem dispatcher. In 1995, Chris was hired by the Mountain View Police Department as a police officer and served in a wide variety of assignments including patrol, property crimes detective, person crimes detective (where he received the 2001 Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office Homicide Investigator of the Year Award), SWAT, and agent in the REACT Silicon Valley High Tech Crimes Task Force.
Chris is passionate about helping government agencies and communities connect and engage with each other. One of the first in the country to begin innovative efforts with digital engagement on social media between the department and our community, Chris’s influence has led him to speak internationally on the topic of community engagement, government’s use of social media, crisis communications and digital strategy. In April 2017, Government Technology Magazine honored him as a "Top 25 Doer, Dreamer, and Driver" and Government Social Media awarded him the" 2017 GSMCON Top Social Media Advocate in Government." In the latter half of 2017, he was included in Engaging Local Government Leader’s (ELGL) 2017 Top 10 List of Government Influencers. Chris continues to teach at the Peninsula Law Enforcement Explorer Academy as well as being a guest speaker for Stanford University Law School’s Prosecution Clinic for the past 17 years.
Chris holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Behavioral Science from San Jose State University and a master’s degree in eBusiness Management from Notre Dame de Namur in Belmont, Calif. He is a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government Senior Executives in State and Local Government program, Leadership Mountain View (Class of 2007), and the California Peace Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) Executive Management course. Chris serves as a committee member on the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Professional Standards, Ethics, and Image committee and served for six years on the City of San Mateo’s Community Relations Commission.
Saul has been with the Mountain View Police Department since 2003. Saul has served in a variety of capacities throughout his career including Field Training Officer, Motor Officer, Special School Resource Officer and Detective/Task Force and was a member of the Bicycle Patrol Team, Crisis Negotiation Team, Peer Counseling Unit and Recruiting Team. In addition to these roles, Saul was also instrumental in developing and branding several community outreach campaigns including the department’s podcast, The Silicon Valley Beat. Saul holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice Administration from the University of Phoenix, a Master's Degree in Emergency Services Management from California State University, Long Beach and is currently completing his Doctorate in Human and Organizational Psychology from Touro University. Saul is a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police and is also a graduate of the LEAD Certificate program through the Stanford Graduate School of Business, the California POST Supervisory Leadership Institute, Leadership Mountain View and the City of Mountain View Leadership Development Program. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy, Session 282.
You can follow Saul on Twitter at @MVPDJaeger.
Mike has been with the Mountain View Police Department for over 20 years and has served in a number of positions including as a Field Training Officer, Detective, Task Force Agent, SWAT Team member and Recruiting Team member. Mike promoted to Sergeant in 2011 where he supervised patrol teams, ran our Crimes Against Person’s Unit and served as our SWAT Team Leader. In 2014, Mike promoted to Lieutenant, taking on new roles and responsibilities. In his time as a Lieutenant, Mike served as our Negotiations Commander and SWAT team Tactical Commander, a Patrol Watch Commander and managed many of our specialized units including, our Traffic Enforcement Team, the Personnel and Training Unit, our Investigations bureau as well as the Operational Services Unit. Mike is the recipient of our Distinguished Service Medal and proudly shares our Meritorious Unit Citation. Mike holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree from Columbia Southern University. Mike is a member of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, The Crisis Ready Institute and the California Police Chiefs Association.
|Lt. Wahed Magee
Wahed began his career with the Mountain View Police Department in 2006. During his time with MVPD he has served as a patrol officer, field training officer, detective, task force agent, K-9 handler, and the Neighborhood and Event Services sergeant. His current assignments include patrol watch commander, Field Training Program Coordinator, K-9 Coordinator and Mobile Field Force Coordinator. Additionally, Wahed served on SWAT as an operator, sniper, assistant team leader and is currently the Tactical Commander.
|Lt. Armando Espitia
In his 22 years with the City of Mountain View, Armando has worked as a Field Training Officer, as a member of the Gang Suppression Team, as a Crisis Negotiations Team member, as a driver's training instructor , and as a detective in the Crimes Against Person Unit. Armando also worked as a detective in the FBI Violent Gang Safe Streets Task Force and served as Police Officer Association President. Armando is currently oversees weekday patrol teams , our Youth Services Unit, Gang Suppression Team, Crisis Negotiation Team, CIT, Peer Support Team and our community service officers.
|Lt. Dan Frohlich
Dan has been with the Mountain View Police Department for more than 16 years, and during his time here has served as a patrol officer, a field training officer and as a detective, among other assignments. As a lieutenant, he currently oversees Personnel and Training and Property and Evidence.
|Lt. Frank St. Clair
Frank started with the Mountain View Police department in 1997. Frank is currently assigned as the task force commander for the Santa Clara County Specialized Enforcement Team (SCCSET). Frank’s previous specialty assignments have included assignments in fugitive apprehension, SCCSET agent, and he served as the sergeant of the Crime Suppression Unit.
|Lt. Scott Nelson
Scott started his law enforcement career with the Modesto Police Department in 2005 and came to Mountain View in 2016. He has worked in special assignments including Field Training Officer, SWAT Operator, Motor Officer, Cyber/Digital Forensics, Crime Scene Investigator (CSI) Team, and Public Information Officer. Scott holds a BA degree in Psychology, an MBA, and a Juris Doctorate Degree. He currently manages the weekend Patrol Teams, Neighborhood and Event Services (NES) Unit, Traffic Unit, Cyber Crimes unit, and the Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS – Drone) Unit.
| Public Safety Support Services Manager Jennifer Copeland
Jennifer began her career with the Mountain View Police Department in 1995 as a part time police assistant. Her roles at the department included Lead Police Records Specialist and Records Unit Supervisor before she was promoted to Public Safety Support Services Manager in 2016, where she oversees the Police and Fire Records units and the Public Safety Systems. She holds a BS from CSU Long Beach and a Master’s in Public Administration from Notre Dame de Namur University.
|Emergency Communications Manager Barbara Liberty
Barbara began her career in Public Safety Dispatching beginning with Scotts Valley PD in 1990 and moved to the San Jose Police Department in 1992. Her roles at the department included; Public Safety Dispatcher, Communications Training Officer, Academy Instructor, Tactical/Hostage Negotiations Dispatcher, and more. Barbara was an instructor for South Bay Regional Training Center for ten years teaching topics on Critical Incidents, Wellness, Workplace Communications, Customer Service, Communications Training Officer Program and Radio Procedures. Before joining MVPD, she was the Records and Communications Manager at San Jose State University Police Department.
Social Media and Public Relations Coordinator Katie Nelson
Katie has been the Social Media and Public Relations Coordinator at the Mountain View Police Department since 2015. In her role, she manages the department’s social media accounts and outreach campaigns, focusing primarily on the department’s engagement efforts as well as serving as the agency’s public information officer. She presents across the country on social media best practices and crisis communication strategies. She serves as an instructor with the California Office of Emergency Services and the California POST. She is currently the General Chair of the International Association of Chiefs of Police Public Information Officers Section, and is a recipient of the Young Athena Award and an Award of Distinction with the California Peace Officers Association.
You can follow Katie on Twitter at @katienelson210.
Mountain View was incorporated on November 7, 1902. One of the first acts of the new city council was to elect a marshal, R.C. Waits. Waits' duties were mostly administrative, and another officer was hired in 1909 to assist with the enforcement of laws. In addition to the marshal, the Santa Clara County Sheriff and Fremont Township Constable also had offices in town.
In 1916, the city appointed a traffic officer to address the problem of speeding vehicles on Castro Street. Officers were expected to provide their own vehicles, which may explain why the city had to recruit candidates from as far away as San Jose to fill the position.