Chief Pristoop's Biography
Chief Michael A. Pristoop began his police career in 1986 as a patrolman in Baltimore City, Maryland and retired in 2007 as a Major in command of the Northern District – one of the city’s nine police districts. During his tenure with the Baltimore Police Department, he held the ranks of Patrol Officer, Sergeant, Lieutenant, Deputy Major and District Commander (Major). After 21 years of service to Baltimore City, he left to become Chief of Police with the Maryland Department of General Services – Maryland Capital Police (DGS-MCP). In April, 2008, Chief Pristoop was selected to serve as the interim Chief of the Annapolis Police Department and was sworn-in as the 25th Chief of Police on July 29, 2008.
The majority of Chief Pristoop's career has been in operational assignments. He has supervised many diverse areas as a sergeant and lieutenant including patrol, district detectives, drug enforcement, domestic violence, and uniform and plain-clothes special operations. During 7 years with the SWAT team, he served as both an officer and as the team’s leader. He commanded a city-wide Special Enforcement Team before being promoted to Deputy Major. In that position, he served as the executive officer of the city’s Western District. His final assignment in Baltimore was as District Commander in charge of the Northern District, a geographic area covering approximately 16 square miles and home to 100,000 residents, 80 diverse communities, 3 major colleges and universities, and 2 respected hospitals. As District Commander of the Northern District, Chief Pristoop commanded 160 police officers, detectives, supervisors and civilian personnel.
Chief Pristoop has been credited with enacting significant crime reduction strategies and has directed numerous special assignments in his career. As the Northern District commander, his strategies helped to significantly reduce violent and property crime in his district and the City of Baltimore. In 2002, Chief Pristoop was detailed to command dozens of police officers in the District of Columbia for the International Monetary Fund (World Bank) protests. He was also deployed to New Orleans, Louisiana in September 2005, as part of a Maryland task force, in command of police personnel during a successful search and rescue mission centered in hard-hit St. Bernard Parish in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
As Chief of Police for DGS-MCP, Chief Pristoop commanded 180 sworn, security, and civilian personnel. This agency is responsible for security and law enforcement operations in and around 30 state-managed facilities and 25 parking areas in the Annapolis and Baltimore areas. DGS-MCP is also the lead agency for Maryland’s “state-wide” expanding Electronic Security Card Program.
Chief Pristoop holds a BS in Jurisprudence from the University of Baltimore and a JD from the University of Baltimore, School of Law, earning high honors with both degrees. He is a member of the Maryland Bar, the Heuisler Honor Society, Maryland Chiefs of Police Association, and the International Association of Chiefs of Police. Chief Pristoop is a graduate of the FBI National Academy, 215th Session, and is credited with a professional publication. Beyond all, his greatest joy and accomplishment is being the father of two wonderful children, Taylor and Alex.