Keith Boyd

KING CITY — King City Police Chief Keith Boyd will be leaving his post to accept the undersheriff position with the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office, city officials announced this week.

Boyd’s last day on the job with the City of King will be Dec. 29.

“Chief Boyd was hired to continue the progress of rebuilding and improving the King City Police Department, and he has done an outstanding job in accomplishing that goal,” said City Manager Steve Adams. “He has led an extraordinary effort of implementing new technology, expanding training of staff, and initiating extensive community outreach efforts to establish what is now a model police department. He will be greatly missed, but we know he will do great things at the Sheriff’s Department and look forward to continuing to work with him in that capacity.”

With Boyd’s departure, police Capt. James Hunt has been appointed interim police chief, also effective Dec. 29. According to Adams, the process for selecting a permanent replacement will be determined within the next two months.

“We are very fortunate to have someone as capable as Capt. Hunt available to step into this role immediately,” Adams said. “He has tremendous law enforcement and leadership skills and experience. I am very confident that he will continue to expand on the progress that has been made.”

Hunt has a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice management from Union Institute and University and a master’s degree in law enforcement and public safety leadership from the University of San Diego. 

He has more than 31 years of experience in law enforcement, including 26-1/2 years in various assignments with the San Jose Police Department, three-and-a-half years with the Greenfield Police Department as captain and acting chief of police, and just over one year as the captain with the King City Police Department.

“I am honored to be appointed as the interim police chief for the King City Police Department and want to thank City Manager Adams for the opportunity,” Hunt said. “I look forward to the experience and strive to build on the legacy of community service and professionalism fostered by Chief Boyd.”

Boyd has worked with the King City Police Department since 2019, first as captain and then as chief. He said that he has been “honored to serve the King City community as their chief of police.”

“The men and women of the police department are some of the most dedicated people I have ever worked with. The commitment to the community is second to none,” Boyd said. “Knowing the King City Police Department has an incredible ensemble of staff, I am confident they are in a great position moving forward with Interim Chief of Police Hunt.”

In last month’s General Election, Monterey County voters elected Marina Police Chief Tina Nieto as their new sheriff/coroner, following the retirement of current Sheriff Steve Bernal at the end of the year. 

Nieto recently announced four new members of her executive team, including Boyd as undersheriff and Del Rey Oaks Police Chief Jeff Hoyne, current Investigations Commander Garrett Sanders and Marina Police Commander Eddie Anderson as chief deputies.

“I look forward to working with Sheriff-Elect Nieto, the entire executive team she has put together, and the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office in representing the interests of public safety in Monterey County,” said Boyd, adding that “King City will always hold a place in my heart.”

Boyd will be recognized for his service as King City’s police chief at the next City Council meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 13, at 6 p.m. at City Hall, 212 S. Vanderhurst Ave. The public is welcome to attend.

“The City greatly appreciates Chief Boyd’s service to King City,” said Mayor Mike LeBarre. “We are very proud of our police department, and Chief Boyd has been instrumental in making our community safer. He has a great track record of successful responses to incidents, has worked to promote service, always responsive and fair to everyone in the community, and has been a very effective and ethical leader. We wish him great success in his new role.”

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Ryan Cronk is the managing editor for King City Rustler and Salinas Valley Tribune, a unified publication of Greenfield News, Soledad Bee and Gonzales Tribune. He covers general news for South Monterey County and the surrounding communities.


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