East Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome will announce her pick for the new Baton Rouge Police Chief before the end of this week, spokeswoman Janene Tate said Tuesday.
The pool of candidates for the city's top law enforcement post was slimmed to five in early December by a committee organized by Broome to assist in the decision.
Three current Baton Rouge Police officers are still in the running — Myron Daniels, Darryl Honoré and Robert McGarner — as well as former Baton Rouge Police officer Ronald Stevens and current Louisiana State Police trooper Murphy Paul Jr.
There are now five candidates left in the running to become the next Baton Rouge police chief.
All five remaining candidates are law enforcement veterans with experience in Baton Rouge.
In their last public statement in December, all three current Baton Rouge Police officers up for the chief position stressed their desire to continue fostering relationships between police and the community. Paul and Stevens highlighted their leadership skills.
Since the 2016 protests following the Baton Rouge police shooting of Alton Sterling, which occurred just before the mayor's race, Broome has said that a key priority is improving the rapport between residents of black neighborhoods and police.
A 14-person committee publicly interviewed seven candidates, but eliminated two before passing along the finalists to the mayor.
Broome has also individually interviewed all five of the top candidates, Tate said.
Picking a police chief was a priority for Broome during the campaign. But after taking office in January, she ended up in a protracted standoff with former Chief Carl Dabadie Jr., who has been appointed by her predecessor. In Baton Rouge, the police chief job is protected by civil service rules, which made it more difficult for Broome to replace the top law enforcement officer than it would be for mayors in many other cities.
In July, however, Dabadie announced his retirement. But the city's civil service regulations again interfered with Broome's intended goal of conducing a nationwide search for a new chief, city officials have said. The civil service requirements, such as the fact that each candidate needs to pass an exam, made the job less attractive to out-of-state candidates, former interim chief administrative officer James Llorens has said.
Every applicant for the position had worked in Louisiana law enforcement.
All but one applicant passed the civil service police chief exam in October, making 11 candidates eligible for the role. Since then, four have dropped out of the running.
Baton Rouge Interim Chief Jonny Dunnam has said since his appointment that he was not interested in the permanent position, despite previously taking the civil service exam for chief three times. He most recently took the exam in 2013, when he scored the highest of the other applicants. Dunnam said this summer he plans to retire in about three years.
Eleven people who applied to become the next Baton Rouge police chief have passed a civil service exam and will move forward to the next step …