Retiring KBI director reflects on 46-year law enforcement career

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) – The new year marks the end of a long career in public safety.

Kirk Thompson began working as a sheriff’s deputy for Barton Co. 46 years ago. His last visit was in Topeka, where for the past 11 years he was director of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation.

Thompson spoke Wednesday at the Eye in northeastern Kansas. He said he was most proud of the people he had worked with over the years.He said those who work at KBI are dedicated professionals who work hard to serve the public and fellow law enforcement agencies said it is.

“It’s nice to know that what we’re doing is making a difference,” he said.

Thompson also looked at how technology has changed law enforcement, not just how evidence is collected and investigated, but also available evidence such as DNA.

Technology has also brought a whole new realm to criminals and crime types. Thompson said social media in particular is becoming part of more and more investigations.

Thompson will retire on January 10, 2023. Chris Kovac has been elected as the next Attorney General for the state and has indicated his intention to nominate former federal prosecutor Tony Mativi as the next KBI Director. Mattivi’s appointment is subject to state Senate approval.

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