Frank Reagan is the current Police Commissioner and son of former Police Commissioner, Henry Reagan, and a widower. He has four children: Danny, Erin, Jamie and Joe who was killed in the line of duty. Currently he has three grandchildren: Nicky, Jack, and Sean. While he loves the NYPD and his work as the Police Commissioner, occasionally he finds himself questioning whether or not he still wants the job.
Despite currently being commissioner, he has had prior experience on patrol and as a detective, and is not afraid to use this to do his own investigations into circumstances surrounding current events. Frank often uncovers new information this way, which lets him draw decisive conclusions about the best course of action. While mindful of others their position in life, he also has a prudent and steadfast approach to resolving disputes, both at work and at home.
Frank is the son of Henry and Betty Reagan, born in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, New York. He had an older brother, Peter Christopher Reagan, who died of leukemia at the age of 18 months over a year before Frank was born, resulting in Frank growing up an only child.
Frank married Mary Margaret Reagan in the early 1970s, and they have four children together: Danny, Erin, Joe, and Jamie.
Each of Frank's sons followed him into the NYPD: Danny is a Detective 1st Grade and lead investigator with the 54th Precinct's Detective Squad; Joe was a Detective with the Warrants Squad who was murdered on the orders of his partner Sonny Malevsky, the leader of a corrupt gang of police officers called the Blue Templar; and Jamie is a patrol officer assigned to the 12th Precinct with a law degree from Harvard University. Frank's only daughter, Erin, is also in law enforcement as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney. Erin was promoted to Deputy Bureau Chief of the NYC DA's Trial Bureau in 2013.
In addition to his children, Frank is also a loving grandfather to Erin's daughter, Nicky Reagan-Boyle, and Danny's two children, Jack and Sean Reagan. In one episode, it is mentioned that Frank's wife's grandfather was one of the builders on the Brooklyn Bridge in the 1870s and '80s. Frank's grandfather, Charles Reagan, was an Irish immigrant who served in World War I before becoming a police officer. Charles was the one who taught Frank how to fish. In "Whistle Blower" (season 2, episode 10), Frank mentions his great-uncle Teddy Reagan, a member of the NYPD Mounted Unit, who spent a cold night in a boxcar with his horse, Dolly, and woke up in Pittsburgh.
Growing up, Frank became friends with Angelo Gallo, who grew up to be one of the top mafia lawyers. After Gallo was shot on the orders of a former client, Frank has him publicly arrested for hindering prosecution, to protect him from being considered a rat. Another close friend of his is Monsignor Walter Donahue, a member of the city archdiocese.
However, it is also mentioned that Frank does not have many friends in the New York City Council, especially after Danny's arrest of city Councilman Tony Mancini, a former NYPD detective, for domestic abuse.
After serving in the United States Marine Corps during the Vietnam War (during which time he held the rank of Lieutenant and was awarded the Navy & Marine Corps Achievement Medal), Frank became the third generation of Reagans to become a police officer. He began his career as a patrol officer stationed at the 27th Precinct. After three years on patrol, he was promoted to Detective 3rd Grade. Since then, he has served in various positions across the city, culminating in being appointed Police Commissioner.
In the 1970s, Frank led the attempt to apprehend Whitey Brennan, the head of the Westies, at his grandson's baptism. Due to the chaos, a shootout ensued in which two police officers were wounded and four people from the Westies were killed, including Whitey's wife and grandson.
In the early 1980s, Frank served in the Canine Unit as a dog handler. However, he transferred out of the unit after Greta, his partner, was shot and killed by a burglar Frank sent her in after.
From 1995 to 1999, Frank was the Commanding Officer of the Special Investigations Unit, a special anti-narcotics task force.
On September 11, 2001, Frank was working in the North Tower when the South Tower collapsed. He spent days at Ground Zero, and took refuge at St. Paul's Chapel, where he and other officers slept in the pews.
As a "Member Of the Service" (MOS) prior to 1986, Frank continues to carry a revolver (a Colt Official Police "Fitz Special" that originally belonged to his father and grandfather) as his duty weapon. He also owns a Colt Government M1911. At one point, he uses it on a serial rapist who was about to rape and kill Erin.
Frank was appointed the Police Commissioner by Mayor Frank Russo. In 2011, after the election of Carter Poole (David Ramsey), Frank offers to tender his resignation, but Poole decided to keep Frank on as PC. In 2015, after Mayor Poole's successful reelection, Frank struggles with whether he even wants to stay on for another four years as PC, assuming the Mayor even asks him to. He ultimately decides to stay for "as long as the Mayor's head is in his ass" (which was remarked as indefinitely). The Mayor officially asked Frank to re-up in February 2016 and he agrees.
Frank has an indifferent attitude towards politics, often taking on the mayor and numerous reporters who misinterpret his actions. He tries hard not to judge people, and tends to purse his lips together when hearing bad news or the horrific details of an ongoing case. He also refuses to play favorites; in season 4, he mentions that he is afraid to recommend Jamie, now with four years on the force, for promotion to Detective because it would look like nepotism.
In 2011, Frank was shot by Kevin Brennan, the son of the former head of the Westies who Frank arrested back in the '70s.
In 2013, Frank is the target of an assassination attempt by Hector Santiago, a mentally-challenged teenager of the Bitterman housing projects who is tricked by a member of the Los Lordes gang who declared war on the NYPD. The bullets miss Frank, but hit Mayor Poole, leaving him paralyzed and confined to a wheelchair.
One of Frank's predecessors, "Crooked" Commissioner Connors, served time in a federal prison after his term as PC was completed and left him with more than one mess to clean up, including Officer Thomas Sculley, one of four patrol officers who, a few months after 9/11, accidentally shot an unarmed Muslim teenager, and was acquitted of all charges and allowed by then-Commissioner Connors to keep his job. In 2016, Officer Sculley, who had kept his head down for the last 14 years and made great strides to atone for his horrible rookie mistake, passed the Sergeant's exam with flying colors. Frank was reluctant to promote him, lest tensions between the citizens and the police grow even worse and ultimately offered Officer Sculley a choice: transfer to another city (Long Island, Albuquerque, New Mexico, Boulder, Colorado, or San Diego were among the departments Frank talked to) or take his promotion to Sergeant and ride a desk at the NYPD Erie Basin Auto Pound in Brooklyn for the rest of his career.
In the first season, Frank is well regarded and respected by his officers and his city, to the point where the Mayor felt threatened by his popularity.
However, by season 6, public opinion regarding the police – and him personally – has changed so drastically that he gets booed off-stage while speaking at Columbia University. Frank was nearly served with a vote of no confidence by the NYPD rank and file in 2012 when he publicly apologized for the accidental shooting of a black man by a rookie patrol officer instead of waiting for the official report.
Known Police Assignments
- Patrol Officer, NYPD 27th Precinct
- Patrol Officer, NYPD 25th Precinct
- Detective, NYPD 21st Precinct
- Senior Detective, NYPD Homicide
- Dog handler, NYPD Canine Unit
- Commanding Officer, NYPD Special Investigations Unit
- Deputy Chief, NYPD Patrol Borough Brooklyn South
- Chief of Department, NYPD (wears the uniform and shield to Academy graduation)
- New York City Police Commissioner
Over his career, Frank has had numerous partners.
- Jimmy Burke – Frank's partner while stationed at the 27th Precinct who took a bullet for him. He was eventually promoted to Inspector and placed in command of the 15th Precinct. While up for a promotion to Deputy Chief as the Deputy Commander of Patrol Borough Manhattan South, it was revealed that he had been cooking the books for his precinct's CompStats. Frank allowed him to retire rather than face demotion to Captain and reassignment to the 128th Precinct in Staten Island.
- Lenny Ross – Frank's partner while stationed at the 25th Precinct; by 2016, Lenny had retired and wrote a book about the bad old days entitled "Back in the Day" detailing their exploits.
- John McKenna – An NYPD officer who was with Frank during 9/11 who later got sick and died from illness he was exposed to during the attacks.
- Greta – When assigned to the Canine Unit as a dog handler, Frank's partner was Greta. He transferred out of the unit after Greta was shot and killed by a burglar Frank sent her in after.
American Flag Breast Bar
World Trace Center Breast Bar
Medal of Honor Breast Bar
Meritorious Police Duty Breast Bar
Excellent Police Duty Breast Bar
Unit Citation Breast Bar
1986 Liberty Breast Bar
USMC Service Breast Bar
Firearms Proficiency Bar
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