St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington's possible successors all local

The four finalists fielded questions before a panel yesterday, and they're all still in the running.

St. Paul City Attorney John Choi was co-chair of the 21-person advisory panel that screened candidates and then forward them to Mayor Chris Coleman, according to the Pioneer Press.

The candidates are all currently within the St. Paul Police Department:

  • Cmdr. Todd Axtell, a watch commander
  • Senior Cmdr. Colleen Luna, who heads the Western District
  • Senior Cmdr. Bill Martinez, who heads the Eastern District
  • Assistant Chief Thomas Smith, who is in charge of operations

"The mayor will essentially make the decision about who will be the next police chief," Choi says. "Of course, he has to get four votes on the city council to agree with him."

Coleman is expected to choose a police chief by mid-May, and then his choice will have to be approved by the City Council.

Want to weigh in? The four candidates will answer questions from the public at public hearings on April 26 and 27 from 6 to 8:30 Arlington High School and then at Johnson High School. Written questions can be submitted at the forum, or ahead of time at [email protected]

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