City seeking input in search for new police chief

November 26, 2012 11:39:07 PM PST
The city of San Jose is holding the first in a series of public meetings this evening to discuss the qualities residents want to see in their next police chief.

The meetings are meant to provide a forum for "anyone who wants to give input on the next chief of police," said Lee Wilcox, assistant to the city manager.

When current Police Chief Chris Moore was chosen for the job in 2010, Lee said, the city hosted more than 75 similar outreach meetings.

"Some had four or five people," Lee said. "And we had some where there were 150 people in the room."

In a letter to the City Council a week ago, City Manager Debra Figone, who will recommend the next chief to the council for approval, said "the 2010 process identified community priorities and themes that will provide a solid foundation for our current search."

Figone said that through surveys, correspondences and the meetings, her office had identified five major themes that seemed to be important to the community.

Those were cultural competency; community engagement and policing; efficacy in management, communication and collaboration; courage and honesty; and a proven record of crime prevention and suppression.

According to Lee, only four community meetings will be held this year, in part because the city has little time to fill Moore's position before he leaves in mid-January.

The meetings are being held in various areas of the city in the hopes that anyone who wants to go to one won't have to travel far, Wilcox said.

No candidate names will be discussed at the meetings.

The first meeting will be held tonight from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Berryessa Community Center at 3050 Berryessa Road. There will also be a meeting on Wednesday at the same time at the Camden Community Center at 3369 Union Ave.

Additional meetings will be held on Monday, Dec. 3, at the Mayfair Community Center and Monday, Dec. 10, at the Southside Community Center.

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