Cop talk

Austin officials name interim police chief to permanent post following nationwide search

Austin officials name interim police chief to permanent post

Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon
Joe Chacon will take the permanent chief position. KVUE

KVUE — Austin interim police chief Joe Chacon will step into the role permanently, officials will announce Wednesday, September 22, taking the helm of a department that is in the midst of reform and battling a spike in homicides and gun violence.

City manager Spencer Cronk selected Chacon over two other finalists — Los Angeles deputy chief Emada Tingirides and Dallas assistant police chief Avery Moore — in a move that seemed unlikely months ago. 

Chacon will be the second internal candidate Cronk has promoted, but many had expressed the desire for an outside chief after the departure of the previous chief, Brian Manley, in March.

The Austin City Council must still confirm Chacon and is expected to consider his appointment on September 30.

Cronk appointed Chacon as interim chief after Manley’s departure, bypassing Manley’s chief of staff for the temporary role. Chacon, who has previously been a finalist for chief jobs in Boise and Waco, then applied for the job during a national recruitment effort. 

In recent weeks, he participated in a forum with the two other finalists and increasingly began receiving community support. Notably, some in Austin’s activist community did not favor Tingirides, who at times was considered to have the inside track for the job. Also notable is that the Austin Police Association has publicly supported Tingirides and in recent weeks has mounted a behind-the-scenes campaign against Chacon.

Chacon will step into the permanent role in a particularly critical time.

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