New York City Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell speaks at a...

New York City Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell speaks at a news conference on Tuesday Credit: AP/Ted Shaffrey

New NYPD commissioner Keechant Sewell, continuing to put her stamp on the department, is expected to announce Friday several major staff appointments — including Chief Kathleen M. O’Reilly's promotion to chief of patrol overseeing some 22,000 officers, according to law enforcement officials.

O’Reilly, who had been chief of the transit bureau that provides for subway security, will replace Chief Juanita Holmes. Holmes, a onetime potential candidate for the top job, will take over the training function of the NYPD and will be responsible for the police academy operation, the officials said.

Other major NYPD appointments will deal with the internal affairs and housing bureaus' personnel. Earlier in the week, former internal affairs director Joseph Reznick announced his retirement. At the same time Sewell was sworn in two weeks ago, Chief Kenneth Corey, who had been in charge of training, was named chief of department, the highest uniformed rank.

Sewell, who had been chief of detectives in the Nassau County Police Department, became NYPD commissioner on Jan. 1 and the staff changes were expected as she puts into place her plans for dealing with violence, gun trafficking and quality of life offenses.

Remaining as chief of detectives is James Essig, while on the civilian side, John Miller will remain as deputy commissioner for counterterrorism and intelligence, said one of the law enforcement officials.

Since Sewell took over, she has already had to resolve differences with another new law enforcement official, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg Jr., whose policy about potentially downgrading some offenses prompted her public comments.

Sewell pushed back at Bragg, saying she had concerns about the impact of his policies on officer and public safety, and the two met this week, agreeing to keep talking about the issues.

O’Reilly, who joined the department in 1995, had been chief of transit since October 2020. She presided during a period in which overall transit crimes decreased but the system was also plagued by some high-profile attacks on riders, including people being pushed onto tracks and assaulted. Before her job in transit, O’Reilly had also served as borough commander of the Manhattan North sector which covers 12 precincts, including Central Park.

O’Reilly didn’t return a call for comment. Holmes couldn’t be reached for comment.

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