SIOUX FALLS, SD - A police lieutenant has made it his mission to get rid of drugs in Sioux Falls, and he says that won't change when he becomes assistant chief. Kyle Hoekstra will take the Sioux Falls Police Department's second in command post in early September.
He talked with KELOLAND News about what he thinks of his new role, and what his goals are for the community.
In his early days, Hoekstra started in a patrol car.
"Did some ride-a-longs with law enforcement and internship with law enforcement and that kind of was the catalyst that I decided that's something I wanted to do the rest of my life," Hoekstra said.
Hoekstra began his law enforcement career in 1997 with the Sioux Falls Police Department. He's held a variety of positions including Property Crimes Detective, Animal Control Sergeant and Property Crimes/Narcotics Lieutenant.
"In filling this role, I sought a person who was eminently qualified, had meaningful experience from various areas of the department, and above all, exhibited the requisite character and faultless dedication to the high purpose and mission of our department," Police Chief Matt Burns said. "Kyle embodies these traits and will be an incredible addition to the department's senior leadership team."
An executive order issued by Mayor Paul TenHaken made the Assistant Police Chief role a civil service position, so it no longer requires appointment by the mayor. Hoekstra's promotion is effective September 10. He replaces Galen Smidt, who retired from the department to go work at Augustana University.
"I do have some big shoes to fill," Hoekstra said.
He plans to put his best foot forward in his new role. Some of his goals include making sure the department and staffing numbers keep up with city growth, and tackling a big issue he's seen in his current position.
"We need to continue to to be very proactive in this city to get those dealers off the streets and continue to work on narcotics," Hoekstra said.
Kyle Hoekstra may not be on the streets of Sioux Falls anymore, but he says assistant chief is a new avenue to serving the community.
"It's a big responsibility, and you know, it's a tremendous honor, too," Hoekstra said.