MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – Amy Prock, the interim police chief of the Myrtle Beach Police Department, will be sworn in as the permanent chief of police on Monday.
City spokesman Mark Kruea confirmed that Prock, a 20-year veteran of the department, will be sworn in at 4 p.m. on July 3 at the Ted Collins Law Enforcement Center.
"She has a strong sense to make this community better and each and every day that she comes to work she tries to do something to make it better in some shape or fashion," Myrtle Beach Police Lt. Joey Crosby said.
Prock, who previously served as assistant police chief, has served as acting interim police chief since May, when Chief Warren Gall retired after 37 years with the department.
"What we're just looking for as a business community and I think as the residents of Myrtle Beach, is not to be confined to the box that they've been working in. It's time for us to start thinking a little bit outside of the box," said Ray Booth, general manager of Oceans One.
Prock started as a patrol officer in 1996 and worked her way through the ranks.
Before serving as assistant police chief, she served as supervisor of the narcotics unit, street crimes unit, regulatory unit and special operations unit, and the critical incident response team. She was appointed captain of the strategic planning division in 2014, where she was instrumental in organizing the city's Memorial Day weekend plans.
In November 2015, Prock was promoted to assistant chief of police. A graduate of Radford University with a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice, she earned her masters of science in clinical psychology from Francis Marion University in 2002.
"She's been here for the good times and what some would consider the bad times," Crosby said. "She knows this organization. She knows the men and women of the department. She's very personable. She gets out each and every day within the department talking to the officers, seeing what their needs are, seeing how they feel about various situations."
Crosby said Prock led efforts to make Bikefest safer.
"She's been a very instrumental person in the planning and operations of the Memorial Day festival operational plans, so she's built a lot of relationships with the surrounding agencies," he said.
According to Crosby, Prock recently took a strong look at internal operations, making the process for doing arrest reports and dropping off evidence more efficient for officers.
"Her effort was to make sure officers were on the road as quickly as possible, so they could handle situations and address the concerns of the community," Crosby said.
City Manager John Pedersen made the decision to promote Prock, saying she had been identified early on as Gall's likely successor.
Pedersen said Gall mentored her the past couple of years.
He said the officers at the police department have confidence in Prock's ability to lead them and that's one of the reasons why he decided to make her chief.
Pedersen said while he had thought about doing a national search for a new chief, Prock was already targeted as the next potential department leader due to the leadership skills she has already shown.
Plus, he said she will be able to enact changes that benefit the community and the department more quickly than if a new chief came in from outside of the area.
Pedersen also said Prock is on the same page as city leaders with their vision for the department, including increasing visibility, investing in more officers and taking a firm stance on crime.
He said she is a dynamic and capable leader.
The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce released the following statement in response to the announcement: