Bill Kolender, a champion of community policing who reformed the San Diego Police Department as chief from 1975 to 1988 and later became San Diego County sheriff, died Tuesday after a long struggle with Alzheimer's disease. He was 80.
His death was confirmed by San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore, who called Kolender “a legend in law enforcement.”
Under Kolender, the department moved away from the more physically aggressive type of law enforcement that once seemed to fit a military town like San Diego but was no longer favored by City Hall during the mayoralty of Pete Wilson, a fellow Republican.
Kolender stressed that police officers should work closely with community...