LA closer to selecting police chief -- will it be SFPD chief Bill Scott?

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- In early May, rumors began swirling that SFPD Chief William Scott may be a candidate for LAPD's top job after its police chief, Charlie Beck, announced his retirement at the end of the year. Scott is now reportedly one of the top three finalists.

Mayor Eric Garcetti says he's had several interviews with all three. On Monday, he said he would decide soon.

"I want to do it right, not fast, but I expect probably in the next nine to 10 days to announce a decision," Garcetti said.

EXCLUSIVE: SFPD Chief William Scott discusses department's future

Garcetti said he would hold his last interview with the three candidates starting Wednesday.

ABC7 News has learned that Chief Scott left on a trip to Los Angeles Wednesday afternoon.

In December 2016, just after Scott was sworn in by Mayor Ed Lee at City Hall, he gave an exclusive television interview to ABC7 News.

He told me he had no plans to go back to LA and apply for the top job there when then chief Charlie Beck retired.

"The mayor and the police commission have put the confidence that I'm going to come here and give it my all. As long as they will have me here. And that is my intent," he said.

Now, there is plenty of uncertainty for Chief Scott.

Mayor Lee has passed. There'll be an election in two weeks for a new mayor.

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Montoya takes over the leadership of the police union from Marty Halloran, who will return to full-time police work.

The Police Union has a new president, Tony Montoya, but the friction is still there. "The members as a whole have not felt connected with this current chief or the current command staff. And, once again, it falls on the shoulders of the POA to be the voice of the members."

And the makeup of the Police Commission has changed. There are now four vacancies on the seven-member commission that supported him, not even enough for a quorum to hold meetings.

On Wednesday, a supervisors committee held a hearing to interview potential candidates.

Still, it'll be at least two weeks before the board can vote on new commissioners.

In the meantime, no one knows if Chief Scott will stay or leave.

Supervisor Ahsha Safai said, "There's a lot of transition happening. And it would be nice to have stability with the head of the police department."

We're told by reliable sources that Chief Scott was really rattled by the way the supervisors handled the recent rejection of two longtime Police Commissioners Joe Marshall and Sonia Malora -- the two members Mayor Farrell had re-appointed to new terms.

Click here for more stories, photos, and video on SFPD Chief William Scott.

Vic Lee will have a full report on ABC7 News at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. And you can follow him on Twitter to get the latest updates on this story.
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