NYPD’s new commissioner takes charge as big challenges loom

NEW YORK (AP) — Serious challenges are abound for the new leader of the nation's largest police department.

Dermot Shea was sworn in Sunday as the 44th commissioner of the New York Police Department, succeeding James O’Neill.

The 62-year-old O’Neill retired to take a job as Visa Inc.’s head of global security after 36 years with the NYPD, the last three as commissioner.

As commissioner, Shea has the ultimate responsibility for keeping crime low. He’ll also have to contend with looming bail reforms and pressure to reduce arrests, along with dissent among some of the department's 36,000 officers.

The 50-year-old Shea started as a Bronx patrolman in 1991 and gained prominence in the department as a crime stats guru.

Mayor Bill de Blasio says he’s "one of the best-prepared” incoming commissioners the city has seen.

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