City News

Statesville Interim Police Chief David Onley has announced the appointment of Russell Brown, 50, as the police department’s first South Statesville Community Resource Coordinator.  Brown began working in his new job on January 14.  He’s spending his first week getting oriented with the department and job specifics; but he’s already very familiar with South Statesville.

A Statesville native who attended Statesville City Schools, Brown has spent most of his life inside Statesville’s city limits.  After graduating from Livingstone College, his career path has transitioned from computer information and tech support to directing afterschool programs with area school systems and leading senior activities with the Statesville Housing Authority.  “I love I.T. stuff, but giving back to the community, helping people in need – that’s where my heart is,” said Brown.

The primary responsibility of the coordinator is to help build relationships between the police and residents of South Statesville, explained Onley.  “We needed someone who the community could trust; someone they could share the specifics on what they felt needed to be done to improve their quality of life.  I believe Russell is the perfect person for this job.”

“I do hope to bring change,” said Brown.  “I know a lot of the reason there is a stigma with the police (in South Statesville) is because of a lack of information.  There are so many resources out there that can help our community.  I want to make people aware of them.”

Brown is quick to quote his mother who often told him, “We didn’t get in this mess overnight, and we won’t get out of it overnight … you’ve got to put in the work.  And I am ready and willing to put in the work. I’m willing to help.”

He will work closely with the Police Department’s Community Oriented Policing (COPS) division, especially with Crime Prevention Officer Chan Austin and Community Resource Coordinator Pam Navey.  “He gets it,” said Navey in describing Brown.  “He is aware of the community’s struggles and respects what people have been through.  He empathizes and understands their choices and decisions.  But he doesn’t think he already knows everything.”

            “I know I’ve got to earn my keep,” added Brown.  “I hope to bring positive energy to the job and learn the ropes.  I understand their walk, but I need to build their trust.”

The Community Resource Coordinator position was approved by Council in the 2018-2019 budget with the stipulation that it could not be filled until January, 2019.  Brown’s permanent office will be in South Statesville, but for the next several weeks, he will have an office in the Tradd St. police station.  He can be reached at 704-878-3406 or

Nancy Davis
Public Affairs Director
email Nancy