President Obama Taps Miller As Next Kansas U. S. Marshal

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TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) -- President Barack Obama has nominated Topeka Police Chief Ronald Miller to serve as U.S. Marshal for Kansas.

“I am honored to be nominated and look forward to the Senate confirmation process,” said Miller.

The Chief had not heard an official timetable on when confirmation hearings would begin. But he says it's the culmination of a process that has already taken several months -- and will take a few more months, as the White House tapped Topeka's top police administrator for the Federal Marshal position.

The federal Marshal has the primary job of the care and custody of the Federal Courts and Courthouses in Kansas, as well as the Judiciary and Judges; Fugitive apprehension, Federal prisoner movements and transfers. The U. S. Marshals comprise the oldest law enforcement agency in the United States.

Chief Miller told 13's Ralph Hipp he was in the Kansas Counter-Terror Task Force meetings in Kansas City when the word came down officially just after 4:30 Thursday afternoon.

"I knew when my e-mails and phone messages erupted, that the choice had been made," Miller said.

President Obama said "Miller has dedicated his career to protecting his fellow citizens. He has displayed courage and persistence in the pursuit of justice, and I am honored to nominate him to continue his selfless work on behalf of the people of Kansas as a U.S. Marshal.”

Miller joined the Kansas City, Kansas Police Department in 1972 as a patrol officer and became chief of that department in 2000. He took the reins of the Topeka Police Department nearly eight years ago. His law enforcement career spans 40 years, dealing with issues on the local level which made him a strong candidate to serve at the Federal level.

Miller has served as a consultant for the Police Foundation and the civil rights division of the U.S. Justice Department.

If Chief Miller is confirmed, he said he's confident City Manager Jim Colson will have a solid process in place to select a new Police Chief this year.

"And Jim Colson is in the position for the next several years, so it's an opportunity for the transition to occur without disruption.. he has asked me to help him work with that process. I'll give him advice, but it'll be up to (Colson) to determine how he wants to proceed."

Chief Miller would succeed longtime Kansas Federal Marshal Walter Bradley, who retired at the end of 2013.