In early June, Helper City Mayor Lenise Peterman made the announcement that Chris Gigliotti of the Helper City Police Department was being promoted to police chief. The need for a new chief came on the heels of Trent Anderson’s retirement from the position.
Chief Gigliotti grew up in Salt Lake City, though his family has had deep connections to Helper for over 100 years. Chief Gigliotti spent a great deal of his summers in Helper and eventually moved to the area with his children 24 years ago.
With a total of 15 years in law enforcement under his belt, Chief Gigliotti began his service in Carbon County with the sheriff’s office, where he worked for six years. From there, he went to the Tooele County Sheriff’s Office, Wendover Division, for a little over a year. Then, he returned to Helper and has worked for the city for the last nine years. Eleven years of his career were spent with his K9, Mazzie.
When asked what prompted him to apply for the chief position, Gigliotti remarked that it was a bittersweet pursuit as he did not wish for Anderson to leave the position.
“Having to fill his shoes is hard, if not impossible,” Gigliotti stated.
He continued by stating that it was not so much that he wished to pursue a chief position as he wished to be the Chief of Police in Helper specifically. Gigliotti believed that, though all of the other candidates were great cops and good people, he had the best interest of Helper. He remarked that it is a unique obligation to be able to protect and serve your family, friends and entire community rather than total strangers.
“It’s a privilege,” said Gigliotti.
For the force, Gigliotti explained that the primary goal as of now is to re-establish the department to full strength as they have been shorthanded for over two years. He remarked that without officers Sean Draper and Garrett Safley, as well as the reserves, the force would not have been able to stay afloat so long.
The department will be interviewing soon and has candidates that will hopefully fill the open spots. Aside from that, he stated that it is obvious that Helper has made some great changes. Anything that the department can do to assist in Mayor Peterman’s vision for the city will be done. He stated that the mayor has been great for the city.
Chief Gigliotti continued, explaining that he wants a more community-oriented police department.
When asked what his favorite part of being in law enforcement is, he stated that it was a tough question, but every once in a while an officer has the chance to make a substantial and positive change in someone’s life. Then, he stated that he is thankful that the Carbon County community has been pro-law enforcement and in support of all that they do.
“I think we’re lucky to live in this community with everything that’s going on in the rest of the world,” the chief concluded.