Hayward police Chief Diane Urban Stuart, who was placed on administrative leave in August over a confidential personnel issue, has announced her retirement effective immediately after five years as chief, city and police officials said Wednesday.
Stuart served in the San Jose Police Department for 26 years, rising to the rank of assistant chief, before joining Hayward as its chief in 2011.
Hayward City Manager Kelly McAdoo issued a statement Wednesday recognizing and praising Stuart's ability to maintain and strengthen the Police Department's top ranking with the national Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, as well as her relationships built with the Hayward community during challenging national conversations about law enforcement's use of force.
During Stuart's tenure, the department grew the number of sworn officers and created additional professional staff positions to provide enhanced customer service to the Hayward community, McAdoo said.
McAdoo said the city recently received an anonymous letter making allegations about Stuart's administration of the Police Department so she initiated an internal investigation in accordance with state law.
State law protects the privacy of personnel information for all law enforcement officials so more information about the allegations was not being released, McAdoo said.
She said that at this time, Stuart has not seen the investigation.
McAdoo said Stuart's decision to retire immediately moves up her planned retirement by about four months.
She said she and Stuart "believe it is in the best interest of the men and women of the Hayward Police Department, as well as to the community she has served, to retire at this time and allow the department and community to move forward."
McAdoo, who became city manager on Aug. 1, said, "Chief Stuart has dedicated over 30 years of her life to providing for the safety of her respective communities. Chief Stuart's only interest is to ensure that members of her department are able to continue serving the Hayward and without the unfortunate distractions of the last few months."
Capt. Mark Koller took over as acting chief after Stuart was placed on leave.