16 compete to be top cop in BR

by robert stewart

Advocate staff writer

At least seven more people applied Tuesday to become Baton Rouge’s police chief, bringing the total applicant pool to 16.

Of the 16 candidates, 13 serve in the Baton Rouge Police Department, according to documents provided by the Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board. One other candidate worked for the department for 26 years before leaving in 2004.

At least 11 have previously applied for the chief’s position.

As of 3:15 p.m. Tuesday, the seven people who applied are:

Only four people had submitted applications as of Sunday: Provisional Chief Carl Dabadie Jr.; Baton Rouge Police Capt. James G. Drickamer; Gonzales Police Department Officer Christopher P. Hagan Sr.; and Bill D. Press, the former police chief of Fairhope, Ala.

Five current Police Department officers turned in their applications Monday: Cpl. Myron K. Daniels, Sgt. Jonathan S. Dunnam, Lt. Todd Lee, Capt. Noel Salamoni and Maj. Patricia Tauzin.

The 11 who have applied for the position before are: Dabadie, Daniels, Drickamer, Dunn, Dunnam, Hagan, Johnson, Kelly, LaMotte, Lee and Tauzin.

The Civil Service Board will approve applications at its April 18 meeting. A two-part chief’s test will be administered May 22. The board will approve the exam scores and forward the names of those who passed to the mayor’s office. Applicants must have a grade of 75 percent or higher to pass the test.

“We’re pleased with the amount of applicants, and we have the utmost confidence in the mayor-president to make the best possible selection for the people of Baton Rouge,” police union President Cpl. Chris Stewart said. “It’s going to be a daunting task pulling the city back together after the turmoil.”

The position became vacant after Mayor-President Kip Holden fired former Chief Dewayne White on Feb. 18.

White has accused Holden of micromanagement and has claimed the police union played a role in his firing.

Holden has called the former chief a “master of deception” who disobeyed orders and divided the community.

Advocate staff writer Jim Mustian contributed to this report.