Tonight, Bishop Dr.Craig Coates led more than 80 Annapolis residents through a group exercise to start the process of hiring a new police chief. Mayor Gavin Buckley fired the former Chief, Scott Baker, saying he lost confidence in his ability to lead.
Buckley appointed a panel who will ultimately make several selections for consideration by Teresa Sutherland, the City Manager. Buckley will approve one and the City Council must confirm the Mayor’s choice.
The purpose of tonight’s meeting was to gather input from residents on four fronts:
- What are the issues?
- What does community policing look like?
- What are the responsibilities of the community?
- What qualifications and qualities do you expect in a police chief?
The audience was broken into 8 groups who worked with a facilitator to come up with lists.
At the end of the evening, Bishop Coates asked each team to read their list of qualifications aloud.
These lists will be compiled by the panel and the results will be used to help vet out candidates for the position. Buckley has not indicated if the search will be from within the department, City, County, State, or Nationally.
There are three other public forums scheduled:
- Meeting 2: Monday, April 1 at Eastport Fire Station (914 Bay Ridge Ave) | 7PM
- Meeting 3: Tuesday, April 2 at “Pip” Moyer Recreation Center (273 Hilltop Ln) | 7PM
- Meeting 4: Thursday, April 4 at Mt. Olive Church Community Center (2 Hicks Ave) | 7PM
In addition to residents, Buckley’s staff was present along with Alderman Fred Paone and Alderwomen Finlayson, Pindell-Charles, and Tierney.