By Sam Stanton
Annette M. Spicuzza, the embattled UC Davis police chief who came under fire in last week's report on what led to the Nov. 18 pepper spray incident on campus, has decided to retire, according to an email statement received by The Bee today.
"My 27 years in law enforcement have been dedicated to the ethical and committed service to the departments and communities I have been proud to be a part of," the statement read. "For the past seven years, I have accomplished many good things for both the Police Department and community here at UC Davis; and am grateful to those of you who have remembered this.
"As the university does not want this incident to be its defining moment, nor do I wish for it to be mine. I believe in order to start the healing process, this chapter of my life must be closed."
University spokesman Barry Shiller said UC Davis was informed that Spicuzza would be retiring effective Thursday and that the school expects to announce her successor shortly.
Spicuzza was suspended, as was Lt. John Pike, who sprayed students and protesters at a demonstration on the Quad that day. They have been on paid leave while an internal affairs investigation was conducted.
That probe is largely complete but there has been no word yet on what actions may stem from its findings.
Spicuzza has previously declined to speak to The Bee, but confirmed by phone today the email was from her.
PHOTO: In this 2005 photograph, Annette Spicuzza stands near the front door of the University of California, Davis police station. Sacramento Bee file.