Assistant Chief Melissa Deanda joined the Chandler Police Department in January of 1999 and began her career as a patrol officer. She spent the first two years of her career as a solo patrol officer before accepting a position as a Detective in the Narcotics Unit. While in this position she spent two years investigating state and local narcotic related crimes, conducting multi-state narcotic investigations, and worked in an undercover capacity.
After completing her time in Narcotics, she returned to patrol for the next three years before accepting a position in the Criminal Apprehension Unit. Detectives assigned to this unit are responsible for locating and apprehending wanted suspects for misdemeanor and felony related crimes. She spent seven years in this unit before being assigned to the U.S. Marshals Violent Offender Task Force. This task force consists of local, state, and federal agencies who work together to locate and apprehend violent offenders across the state of Arizona.
In 2014, Chief Deanda was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and again returned to Field Operations, now a Patrol Sergeant. After one year, she was selected as the Sex Crimes Unit Sergeant where she supervised detectives who investigated sexual and physical crimes against children. She was also involved with the Arizona Child Abduction Response Team (CART), which responds to investigations involving missing or abducted children.
In 2017, Chief Deanda was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant and returned to Field Operations as a Watch Commander. She worked in this capacity for two years before being selected as the Lieutenant over Professional Standards in 2019. While in this capacity, Chief Deanda was responsible for overseeing the department’s Hiring Unit, Internal Affairs, and Accreditation. In October of 2021, she was promoted to Commander in Field Operations and oversaw the Desert Breeze Precinct. In January of 2023, she received a promotion to Assistant Chief and now oversees the Professional Services Division.
In addition to belonging to several professional organizations throughout her career, Chief Deanda has dedicated many hours of service to local non-profit groups and continues to be actively involved in the community. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies from Columbia Southern University and serves on a variety of committees and boards.