Springfield State Journal-Register

May 29, 2002

Gainer in line for U.S. Capitol police chief 


WASHINGTON - Terrance Gainer, Illinois' former top cop, is in line to become chief of the U.S. Capitol Police.

"I think they're just going through some formalities and they hope to make an announcement soon," an aide to House Speaker
Dennis Hastert, R-Ill., said Tuesday.

Gainer, 54, Illinois State Police commander from 1991 to 1998, interviewed with Hastert and others last week.

Hastert, who knows Gainer from his tenure in Illinois, supports him for the Capitol police chief post, Hastert aide John Feehery

A spokeswoman for the Capitol Police Board would say only that Gainer is a finalist for the position. A decision will be
announced later this week, said Kerri Hanley, deputy to House sergeant-at-arms Bill Livingood, the board's chairman.

Gainer, who couldn't be reached for comment, would assume command of the Capitol police force at a critical point in its

The Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the anthrax scare on Capitol Hill have given new prominence to the job and the department,
while increasing the workload and stress on its 1,400-member force.

Many Capitol police officers have been working 12 hours or more a day, even as many of their colleagues leave the
department to take higher-paying federal jobs such as air marshals. The force has shrunk by 18 percent in the past year, said
spokesman Lt. Dan Nichols.

At the same time, the department is trying to increase its work force to 1,900 by 2004.

In light of the terrorist attacks, "we've had to rethink how we protect the United States Congress and those who work and visit
up here," Nichols said. "Because of the symbolism of the Capitol building, we have to be prepared for any number of
threatening situations."

The post-Sept. 11 security challenges have attracted Gainer to the job, he told Roll Call, a Capitol Hill newspaper. He said he
could serve as a bridge between the D.C. police and the Capitol Police, helping to improve coordination between the two

Gainer had applied to be police chief in Atlanta, but withdrew earlier this month because his family is in Washington.

Gainer left the Illinois State Police to become deputy chief to Washington police chief Charles Ramsey. The two had served
together at the Chicago Police Department.

Over the past year, Gainer has been seen repeatedly on television and quoted in newspapers with the latest developments on
the missing intern, Chandra Levy, whose remains were found last week in a heavily wooded area of a park that police already
had searched.