SEATTLE (AP) — Community members — including one critic who helped vet candidates in the official search — rallied at Seattle city hall on May 29 after interim police chief Carmen Best was passed over for the permanent job.
Community leader Frank Irigon said he was “shocked.”
“The thing about bringing an ‘outsider’ is laughable,” said Irigion. “Our API community will once again have to strongly educate the new chief that we are the largest minority population in Seattle and that there shall be an API on the command staff.”
Last week, the top 3 finalists were named, including: former Pittsburgh police chief Cameron McLay; Minneapolis Police Department deputy chief of patrol Eddie Frizell, and assistant chief Ely Reyes of the Austin Police Department in Texas.
Enrique Gonzalez, who was on the search committee that named five semifinalists, said it was “not an honest process” after Best was eliminated from consideration.
The 26-year veteran is a Black woman and popular with the rank-and-file.
Irigon said, “It is imperative that the new chief meet with us (API community) or we’ll come knocking on his door.”
The mayor said Best was disappointed but has moved on.
Search committee leadership said they wanted an outsider.