City to hold town hall for newly-announced police chief candidates

collage of the four candidates: larry boone, melron kelly, robert tracy and michael sack.
Top left: Michael Sack. Top right: Larry Boone. Bottom left: Melron Kelly. Bottom right: Robert Tracy. Photo credit Provided by the city of St. Louis.

The City of St. Louis expects to name a permanent police chief by the end of the year. On Tuesday evening, they’ll hold a town hall where residents can meet the four finalists.

The finalists are Michael Sack, Larry Boone, Melron Kelly and Robert Tracy. Sack, who currently holds the interim position, is from St. Louis. Boone comes from Norfolk, Virginia; Tracy comes from Wilmington, DE; and Kelly comes from Columbia, SC.

Local officials are encouraging residents to take a survey on the city’s website. Those responses will be used to shape a public candidate questionnaire for top contenders. One of the duties of the next chief will be to engage in efforts to remove policing from issues that would be better solved through behavioral health interventions.

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Donny Walters, President of the Ethical Society of Police, told KMOX about that effort last week.

“Every time there is a CIT type of call, and that means there’s a person in crisis, there’s a clinician with a police officer,” he explained. “It’s never just a clinician.”

The city’s website says another responsibility of the new chief will be re-envisioning public safety. The position is currently held in an interim capacity by Lt. Colonel Michael J. Sack. He was appointed in May after former chief John Hayden announced that he’d retire in February of this year

Those interested can attend the town hall meeting from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday at Vashon High School.

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Featured Image Photo Credit: Provided by St. Louis city