CPD Chief search list goes down to 12 applicants - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

CPD Chief search list goes down to 12 applicants

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COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

The search for a new Columbia police chief is now down to 12 applicants.

Thursday night, community members had an opportunity to voice their concerns to the search committee for what they hope to see in a new police chief.

Many said they want to have a chief who leads by example and knows the city.

"Knowing the managers, knowing the employees, knowing the patrons because you get to know everybody who goes to these areas if you are there," said Richard Burts, who represents the Vista and Five Points area.

Another resident wants someone from outside the police department.

"I think that it is imperative that we have a police chief from outside the department," said John Adams. "I don't necessarily not like the idea of an experienced person from the department, but we've done that before and we're sort of at that point where we need somebody to come in and flip it upside down and be sure everything is right."

Search committee Chairman Robert Bolchoz said the plan is to narrow the list down to about six applicants from the original 50 that applied. Those applications will then be presented to City Manager Teresa Wilson, who will start conducting backgrounds on the top individuals.

Bolchoz said the committee has had some conversations with applicants, but the in-person interviews will be completed once the list is narrowed down again.

"We have plans to have the stakeholders' committee meet with the five or six (applicants) and maybe have some community forums," Bolchoz said. "These interviews and community forums and meeting with the police personnel would have to take place the third week to the end of February."

The committee is on schedule to have a decision on the new police chief by early March. The committee plans to meet again within a couple of weeks.

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