Assistant Chief James Harpole began his career with the Milwaukee Police Department on September 9, 1985, joining the Department as a police aide. He was promoted to the rank of Police Officer in 1987, Sergeant in 1996, Lieutenant in 2000, and Captain in 2005. Throughout his career he has been assigned to a number of department work locations, including Districts 2, 3, 5, and 6, the Identification Division, Data Services Division, Communications Division, Patrol Support Division, and the Internal Affairs Division.
Chief Edward Flynn appointed Assistant Chief Harpole to his current rank in September 2008, assigning him as the bureau chief of the Criminal Investigation Bureau, making him the first patrol commander to hold that position. In May 2015, Assistant Chief Harpole was assigned to the position of chief of the Central Command Bureau and in February 2016, he was assigned to the position of Chief of the Neighborhood Patrol Bureau, which includes all seven police districts and the Neighborhood Task Force.
Assistant Chief Harpole holds a bachelors degree in the Administration of Justice from Marian University. He is a 2004 graduate of Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command, and a 2008 graduate of the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police. Assistant Chief Harpole is married and has two daughters.