Updated: Rice U. Police Chief, Major to Leave Institution

HOUSTON — Updated July 27 — Rice University Police Chief Bill Taylor and Major Dianna Marshall are leaving the institution. Althought it has been reported that they resigned in the wake of them firing an officer who left campus to assist two Houston police officers involved in a shootout,  Rice officials say Taylor and Marshall are leaving voluntarily.

According to a spokesman for the university, Taylor is retiring from his position and Marshall is leaving to go back to school.

Officer David Sedmark was fired in May by Taylor and Marshall for leaving his assigned patrol area to respond to an officer down call at a Greyhound bus station three miles from campus, the Galveston Crime Examiner reports. Since his firing, the university was denounced by local and statewide law enforcement organizations, as well as students.

Taylor will stay on the university payroll in a civilian capacity, and Marshall said she has plans to go back to college so she can one day be a police chief.

Rice University issued the following statement regarding these developments:

“The announcement of Rice University Police Chief Bill Taylor’s retirement (not resignation) from Rice was made July 21, effective at the end of this year. Chief Taylor has provided 12 years of dedicated leadership at the Rice University Police Department and will continue to serve in an administrative capacity while Rice conducts a national search for a new chief of police. His retirement has no relation to his decision to fire Officer Sedmak last spring. Sedmak was terminated from the Rice University Police Department for dereliction of duty. He left his post when only two other officers were on duty and failed to notify his supervisor of his whereabouts for nearly an hour, which could have endangered the safety of our students and campus.

“Major Dianna Marshall, who aspires to become a chief of police herself, has decided to go back to school and complete her studies for an undergraduate degree in order to realize that goal. This announcement was made July 21 also.

“Rice University has appointed Sgt. Clemente Rodriguez to serve as interim captain until a new chief is hired.”

Read the full story.

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