New police chief places YSU safety as top priority

Newly appointed Chief Carl Davis of the Youngstown Police Department said one of his biggest priorities is maintaining a good relationship with Youngstown State University. Photo courtesy of Kelly Koenig, Youngstown Police Department

By Richie Juliano

The new Youngstown police chief, Carl Davis, is a veteran member of the Youngstown Police Department. There is much he’d like to accomplish, especially maintaining a good relationship with Youngstown State University.

“We share a lot of the same areas and territories with the campus being on the north side,” Davis said. “I want to make sure we maintain a good relationship with the YSU Police Department.”

On Jan. 15, Youngstown mayor Jamael “Tito” Brown appointed Davis as the police chief. Davis was officially sworn in as the chief Jan. 29. 

Davis has worked closely with YSU’s police department since his first job back in 1986. Davis is familiar with the areas surrounding the campus. He said visibility is a key safety measure to keep the campus protected.

“We want to make sure we have police officers visible on campus,” Davis said. “We want patrol cars around Fifth Avenue, Wick Avenue and Lincoln Avenue.” 

The Youngstown Police Department is considering bringing back a bicycle patrol. Davis thinks this will help with more visibility on campus as well as surrounding areas in Youngstown.  

“We presently have bikes, but we just don’t have the unit in place,” Davis said. “The bicycle patrol is a key piece in addressing crime in the Youngstown and YSU area.”

Davis is also working on obtaining body cameras for officers in the Youngstown Police Department. Davis thinks they will be implemented in the near future.

“We have met with several different vendors, and one particular vendor has several features that we are keenly interested in,” Davis said. “It’s going through a process right now, but we’ll be rolling that out shortly.” 

Davis was a criminal justice major at YSU in the early 1980s. As a former Penguin, he offered advice to current students looking to start a career in the criminal justice field.

“I would encourage anyone who has an interest in criminal justice to pursue it because it gives you an opportunity to make a change,” Davis said. “We need the students now more than ever.”

The job as a chief of police can be very demanding and stressful. To help with the stress of the job, Davis has a giant fish tank in his office. He said the aquarium is a great stress reliever but also provides some educational value.

“I put an aquarium in the detective division about 20 years ago because sometimes we would have children up there, and it was a great conversation piece and helped the kids learn about how to take care of the fish,” Davis said. “The fish tank is very relaxing and this job can be very stressful, so that does help.”


Davis has worked in many different units during his time with the YPD, but he started as a patrol officer back in 1986.

“I worked afternoons and midnights at the time, and worked very closely with YSU,” Davis said. “We made sure we provided a safe environment for the students and the citizens of Youngstown.”