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City Names Toney Armstrong New MPD Director

March 16, 2011

Memphis Mayor A C Wharton announced Deputy Director Toney Armstrong yesterday as his pick for the new head of the Memphis Police Department.

Armstrong, who will be the youngest director of MPD ever tapped from the ranks, looked out at the amassed crowd and started with one word: “Wow.”

“The last couple of weeks I’ve felt like a free agent, and everyone was asking me if I was going to be re-signed,” Armstrong said. “Well, I have been re-signed.”

Armstrong began as a patrol officer with MPD in 1989 and worked his way up the ranks. He has been an undercover operative and team leader for the Organized Crime Unit, and he worked as an investigator in both the  Robbery and Organized Crime Units.

In April 2010, he was tapped as the department’s deputy director and, as the second in command, currently oversees the day-to-day operations of the department’s 2,400 officers and general operating budget of $200 million.

But he may be best known, at least nationally, as a fan favorite on A&E The First 48.

Armstrong is currently undergoing training with the FBI’s National Executive Institute.

[Photo by April Tolbert]

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