Hayden said he made the decision to retire in February 2022 after “prayerful consideration with my family.”
“Our department has made progress on key issues. I am confident under Mayor Jones’ leadership, the city will find a hardworking, dedicated successor,” Hayden said in a statement.
“I thank Chief Hayden for his decades of service protecting the city of St. Louis and its residents,” Mayor Tishaura Jones said. “Our city appreciates the leadership he has shown in trying new tactics to help reimagine and improve public safety.”
The city will conduct a nationwide search for a replacement who is “experienced in 21st-century policing methods,” Jones’ office said in a news release. Jones vowed to keep the public informed throughout the recruitment process.
St. Louis residents can give input about the next police chief through the city’s website. Listening sessions with stakeholders and a town hall are in the works, according to the news release.
Hayden is the 35th St. Louis chief of police and is the former executive aide to the chief of police and commander in the North Patrol Division. He is also the former commander of the Internal Affairs Division where he oversaw investigations into alleged employee misconduct.
A lifelong resident of St. Louis, Hayden holds degrees from Washington University and Fontbonne University and has taken courses at St. Louis University School of Law as well as Covenant Theological Seminary.
Hayden’s retirement date is effective Feb. 23, 2022.
Kaitlyn Schallhorn is the editor of The Missouri Times. She joined the newspaper in early 2019 after working as a reporter for Fox News in New York City.
Throughout her career, Kaitlyn has covered political campaigns across the U.S., including the 2016 presidential election, and humanitarian aid efforts in Africa and the Middle East.
She is a native of Missouri who studied journalism at Winthrop University in South Carolina. She is also an alumna of the National Journalism Center in Washington, D.C.
Contact Kaitlyn at email@example.com.