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Leadership changes at top of Falls police force

Next week, Bryan DalPorto will replace the retiring John Chella as Niagara Falls Police superintendent. DalPorto has been a major with the Air National Guard and a detective lieutenant with the department. Mayor Paul Dyster says there is a generational shift underway at the top of the city's police department where highly-educated and highly-trained officers are moving into top jobs in a changing environment for law enforcement.

He says these younger officers grew up professionally in the computer age where  practices like CompStat use computer systems to plot where crimes occur and how to handle them. That experience, the mayor believes, will help DalPorto as he takes control of the changing department.

"It's certainly the case that he's very well prepared by formal education," Dyster said of DalPorto.

"He's got both bachelor and associate degrees in criminal justice. He's done the FBI National Academy. He also has a military background that we think is going to be very helpful."

Chella, the outgoing chief, has 44 years behind the badge. DalPorto has been with the department for 15 years.

At the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station DalPorto is a major commanding a force support squadron.


Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.