Acting RRHA police chief ‘not taking any questions’

Posted at 11:33 AM, Nov 21, 2013

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) -- Richmond Police Capt. Paul Kiniry was named the new acting police chief of the Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority (RRHA). Mark Holmberg first reported the hiring Thursday morning.

"We are pleased that Captain Kiniry has accepted this new assignment,” RRHA Chief Executive Officer Adrienne Goolsby said in a statement. “We also appreciate the willingness of Richmond Police Chief Ray Tarasovic to ask one of his senior officers to assist us.”

"I will be serving as the acting RRHA police chief effective immediately," said Kinnery Thursday as he  took to the podium to make his first public statement on the job. "I will be offering a few words and will not be taking any questions at this time."

It was literally just a few words, Kinnery spoke for less than two minutes. It turns out he was also being literal about not answering questions.

"I am eager to begin my journey, thank you," Kinnery said before CBS 6 News' Catie Beck asked if he was serious about not be answering any questions.

"I am not. Osita is and her cards are right here," the acting chief said.

CBS 6 had questions about why the agency is hiring another interim chief, this time for a three-month period.

Questions also remain about the circumstances of why the previous chief, Hal Hazelton, was fired without any explanation to the public.

The RRHA spokeswoman gave us answers. However, they were not answers to our specific questions.

"That doesn’t really answer our questions, why not hire a permanent person, why go through another 90 days with an interim," Beck asked.

"Well right now the chief the acting chief is acting our leadership," the spokeswoman responded.

CBS 6 News also has remaining questions for RRHA CEO Adrienne Goolsby, who was not at the meeting, but got no answers on that either.

"This is a controversial firing a big change, I just don't understand why she's not here?" Beck asked.

"Again the good news is we are really pleased to work with Kinnery & RPD,"  the spokeswoman fired back.

CBS 6 News has learned from RRHA sources that Goolsby is in Norfolk. We are told she is there attending a housing conference for the second time in two weeks. Last week she traveled to San Antonio.