The Pittsburgh police bureau's senior lieutenant is the city's newest commander.
Timothy O'Connor, a 29-year-veteran of the force, took the leadership of the Highland Park station after a promotions ceremony this morning. His priorities for the notoriously rough zone include bolstering police presence in parts of the transitional East Liberty neighborhood and building trust in areas were residents are wary of police.
He said he's also concerned about some of the the East End's after-hours clubs and the violence they spawn.
"I want to take a more active role in making resources more available to it," he said.
Cmdr. O'Connor, a lieutenant for 20 years of his career, transferred to Zone 5 in the months after three officers were fatally shot there. He worked the 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. shift, to which officers Eric G. Kelly, Paul J. Sciullo II and Stephen J. Mayhle were assigned.
"The shift needed leadership," said Lt. Reyne Kacsuta, who also works in the Zone 5 station. "He came there because that's what he does. He's a leader. He brings that wealth of experience."
Promoted to lieutenant were Larry Scirotto and Shawn Malloy. Lt. Scirotto will move from sex assault to the North Side station, and Lt. Malloy will move from the North Side to the West End station. They thanked their families and colleagues, with whom they swapped hugs and occasional tears.
"Now more will be expected of them, more will be required of them," Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said. "They are the most qualified and best for the job."