San Jose's top cop search may be over

January 28, 2011 12:34:37 AM PST
The nationwide search for a new San Jose police chief appears to be over. The city manager confirms she's found the right person for the job, and now, we know who is not getting the job.

The likely choice will be the acting police chief Chris Moore and not Oakland Police Chief Anthony Batts. The two men have been the top choices for months.

In the first three weeks of the New Year, there have been seven homicides in San Jose.. Naming a new police chief is more important than ever.

"I know that I am bringing forward the best candidate for the city of San Jose," said City Manager Debra Figone.

Figone announced Thursday night, she's found the right person for the job, but she wouldn't name him publicly. Our partners at the San Jose Mercury News report acting San Jose police chief, Chris Moore, is the one Figone is backing. Moore and Batts have been the two finalists. The nationwide search began in August. Batts sent his congratulations to Moore on Thursday.

"It's a tough job, but I'm sure we're going to have a great chief," said San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed.

Reed also wouldn't comment on the identity of the candidate, but did say the new top cop has his job cut out for him.

"The chief has to also engage with the community. This is a very broad, diverse community. The chief has to have the capacity to not just get along, but to thrive," said Reed.

At a public forum in East San Jose members of one of the city's most outspoken communities, took this opportunity to re-iterate what it needs in a new police chief. They want a police chief to work on a good police-community trust within the first 60 days.

Even though many residents originally felt the new chief should be from outside the area, after working with Moore since October, they've changed their minds.

"I feel he's starting to be there for us and I think he will work for us hopefully," said San Jose resident Dilia Rubiosilva.

"He's listening to the community and he's doing things he things are just. Then what else do you need in a police chief?" said San Jose resident Susan Price-Jang.

This is not a done deal; the city council needs to still weigh in. Members will meet the candidate Tuesday morning in closed session and that's also when they'll also decide whether to accept him.