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Monday August 15th

Brian James named as the next UNC Police Chief, effective July 1

A UNC Chapel Hill police car parked on campus on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.
Buy Photos A UNC Chapel Hill police car parked on campus on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.

Brian James was named the chief of UNC Police on Friday, according to a campus-wide email sent from the University. He will begin his role on July 1. 

James will replace Acting Police Chief Rahsheem Holland. Holland took over in May 2021 when David Perry stepped down after serving in the position since 2019.

James will begin serving as UNC police chief after his retirement as the Greensboro Police Department police chief. In this role, he worked to secure mental health resources for his team and the community, hold conversations about policing with the community and create a program to help teenagers gain employment. 

He worked in the Greensboro Police Department for 26 years. Among other positions, James has served as deputy chief of the police patrol bureau, deputy chief of the police investigative bureau and deputy chief of the police support bureau.

"Chief James was selected after a highly competitive national search, and the search committee strongly endorsed him as the public safety leader most well suited to lead UNC Police," Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz said in the email.

When James begins working in his new role, Holland will return to his position of captain and will assist James with his transition.

James will work to develop relationships between UNC Police, students and members of the local community, according to the email. 

Actions by UNC Police have recently come under scrutiny by student organizations and community members.  

Last summer, the UNC Black Student Movement condemned Holland's promotion, saying he assaulted multiple Black students while they nonviolently protested during a summer 2021 Board of Trustees meeting in support of Pulitzer Prize-winning Journalist Nikole Hannah Jones’ tenure application.


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