Rapid City Police Chief confirmation sparks online debate, contr - KOTA Territory News

Rapid City Police Chief confirmation sparks online debate, controversy

Will the Rapid City Council confirm the mayor's choice for police chief?
A week ago, Mayor Sam Kooiker announced that Lt. Elias Diaz was his pick from a long list of applicants.

The mayor used a citizen committee to narrow down the pool, then picked Diaz from the top three finalists.

Since Monday, blogs, Facebook and emails have been 'blowing up' with criticism and support of the process Kooiker used. In previous years, the outgoing chief made the nomination, and it was okayed and confirmed with the mayor and council.

Most recently, former Chief Steve Allender was grooming Assistant Chief Karl Jegeris for the position.

Ward 4 Council Member Amanda Scott has said she would not vote to confirm Diaz because she feels blindsided by the mayor's decision.  She feels the council was left out of the process.Ward 3 Council Member and Board President, Jerry Wright said a vote to reject  Diaz could mean a political firestorm.
If Diaz is confirmed Monday night, he'll immediately be sworn in as chief. If not, Kooiker says there are several options but none he was willing to discuss in advance.

The city council meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. Follow us on twitter and Facebook for the latest on the confirmation.
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518 St. Joseph St.
Rapid City, SD 57701

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Fax: 605.342.7305

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