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In Memoriam - Retired Burbank Police Chief Glen Bell

January 17, 2019 07:24 AM


It saddens me to announce the passing of retired Burbank Police Chief Glen Bell. Chief Bell passed away peacefully on the evening of January 10, 2019.

George Glen Bell was born in Rugby, Texas on December 14, 1931. He was a longtime Burbank resident, having moved here in 1938. As a young man, Chief Bell earned the rank of Eagle Scout before graduating from Burbank High School in 1950.  In 1951, Chief Bell enlisted in the United States Navy and served in the Korean War as a member of the U.S. Naval Submarine Service, Pacific Fleet. He was a graduate of the United States Naval Submarine Service Course in New London, Connecticut, and he received an honorable discharge in 1954. Chief Bell held a Master’s Degree in Government and Public Service from California State University, Los Angeles.

Chief Bell joined the Burbank Police Department on October 3, 1955 as a Patrol Officer. During his tenure, Chief Bell held assignments as a Motor Officer, Detective, and earned the ranks of Sergeant, Lieutenant and Captain, before being appointed as Chief of Police on December 1, 1982, following the passing of Chief James Schaffer.

Under Chief Bell’s command, the Burbank Police Department expanded to approximately 150 sworn officers and nearly 80 civilian employees. Chief Bell led the implementation of efficiencies such as computerized report writing, upgraded radio systems, and other technological advancements. The Golden Mall policing program was an operation developed during his tenure, and the initiation of the police helicopter program and gang detail occurred at this time as well.

Chief Bell was highly respected and received numerous accolades and commendations throughout his career. He was known for holding Burbank Police Officers to the highest levels of professional standards and was instrumental in the development of modern policing standards that still exist today. In 1985, Chief Bell was named Burbank’s Citizen of the Year by the Kiwanis Club.

Chief Bell served as Chief of Police until his retirement in 1990. He is survived by his wife, Marcia, and two adult children.

Funeral services for Chief Bell will be held on Monday, January 28, 2019 at 11:00 A.M. at St. Barnabas’ Episcopal Church, located at 301 Trinity Way, Arroyo Grande, CA 93420.


Burbank Police Chief Scott LaChasse



Business Line & General Information: 818-238-3333
Non-Emergency, Police Response: 818-238-3000
Emergencies: 911
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