Chris Bailey says 2004 arrest ‘has nothing to do’ with abrupt resignation

Chris Bailey returning to IMPD

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Chris Bailey, a former deputy chief with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, announced plans to resign from his post as a North Carolina police chief after less than two months on the job.

Bailey left IMPD to lead the Asheville Police Department in western North Carolina.

His first day as chief of police was July 29; his last day will be Sept. 27, according to Asheville officials.

A press release issued Wednesday by the city of Asheville attributed Bailey’s abrupt resignation to personal matters “which need his attention.”

“The city is aware of the circulation of information regarding charges against Chief Bailey,” the release states. “Chief Bailey was involved in an incident that resulted in a misdemeanor. This information was voluntarily shared by the chief at the beginning of the interview process and is in no way related to his decision to resign.”

Indianapolis officials declined to comment on Bailey’s 2004 arrest and misdemeanor conviction. Court records associated with the incident were “sealed and expunged,” according to a source familiar with the case, and are not publicly accessible.

Bailey said he had “paid the price” for his actions 15 years ago and worked to “right the wrongs of [his] past.”

“It had absolutely nothing to do with this decision,” Bailey said Wednesday in a phone interview with News 8. “This was solely based on doing what was best for me and my family, and I’m happy with that decision.”

His wife and children stayed in Indiana when he moved to North Carolina. The separation created unexpected challenges for the family, Bailey said.

“I have a pretty young family,” he said. “My wife and I talked about moving and being separated for a period of time so that my kids could complete school… It all sounds good until you put it in practice. There are issues that are hard for me to deal with when I’m 7 hours away and that burden falls on my wife; she’s a superstar. It came to a point where I had to make a decision whether or not I could last several more months. I can’t put one foot in each camp and hope to do the job well. I chose my family over this position.”

Bailey remained an IMPD employee during his stint in Asheville and was paid in full for accrued time off, an IMPD spokesperson told News 8.

He will return to IMPD in early October at his merit rank of captain, the department said in a statement.

“I miss my hometown,” Bailey told News 8. “I miss my family. I miss my friends. I miss that fantastic city. I can’t wait to get back.”