Public weighs in on search for a new St. Louis police chief

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ST. LOUIS - The topic of hiring of a new police chief for the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department took center stage during a public forum Saturday. St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson formed a Citizen Advisory Committee tasked with the job of shaping the process for hiring the city’s next police chief. The committee met at Vashon High School and invited the public to weigh in on the process.

“We’re here to really hear from citizens about the process and what they want to see in a new police chief,” said Krewson.

Citizens offered an array of opinions.  Some of them want a police chief who digs deep into the root causes of crime and focusses crime fighting efforts beyond locking up criminals.

“We’re listening of course and I believe based on what we heard at the first meeting that the citizens who come here want the same thing that we want,” said Krewson.   “So we’ll take it all into account.”

Krewson said the hiring process could take 6-9 months.  She does not want to limit the search to candidates already with the department but said it’s possible the next chief could come from within the current ranks.

The committee has met for a total of three times.  Two of those meetings have involved sessions where the public could share their comments.