Follow Us:

Aug 2009
A new police chief? Maybe November

A new police chief may not be chosen until after resigning LAPD Chief William Bratton leaves the department, the city's personnel manager and Police Commission president said Friday.

"Our timeline projects that our actual selection will occur in November," city Personnel Manager Maggie Whelan told the City Council. "We're trying to expedite this as much as possible but we want to make sure that we do not cut any corners and we have a very valid and transparent selection process."

Bratton is scheduled to step down Oct. 31.

Police Commission president John Mack also said he wants to see a new chief in place, but "we're not going to take any shortcuts."

"Our goal is to do it right and, frankly, we are not going to be locked into any artificial deadline," he said. "Obviously we don't want to drag it out indefinitely but we clearly want to make sure the process is a comprehensive one, a thorough one, a thoughtful one, a fair and open one."

Under the city charter, the Personnel Manager administers the recruitment process and recommends at least six candidates for the Police Commission to interview.

The Police Commission then narrows the list to three candidates to recommend to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, whose selection must be confirmed by the City Council.

To ensure public participation in the process, Mack said the Police Commission will hold community meetings in East and South Los Angeles, the Westside and the San Fernando Valley.

The Personnel Department will also conduct an online survey, which is unprecedented, asking people to rank the qualities they would most like to see in the next police chief.

Whelan said an executive recruiter will not be hired. Instead, she will reach out to the California Police Chiefs Association, the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the Police Executive Research Forum.

PERF will be paid to do background checks of candidates from outside the state, Whelan said, adding the the cost should be "relatively inexpensive."

Whelan and the Police Commission intend to develop a recruitment plan and selection criteria over the next two weeks, then begin accepting applications Sept. 1.

The job opening will be posted on the city's Website for two weeks.

Whelan stressed "we are casting a very wide net."

Mack noted that despite a wide net being cast, internal candidates will also receive serious consideration.

"We recognize that there are some very, very outstanding and viable candidates from within the ranks of the LAPD command staff, and they will clearly be very, very seriously considered," Mack said. "However, we also feel that we have a responsibility both to make sure that we cast the widest possible net so that we can ultimately select the very best candidates.

"They may end up being from within, however, we feel that we have a responsibility to look externally as well as internally," Mack added.

Bratton plans to move back to New York to join a global security company that specializes in bringing "professional, modern criminal justice systems" to post-conflict nations like Afghanistan, Iraq and other emerging democracies.



Related News