Montgomery County Executive Names New Pick for Police Chief

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich plans to nominate the acting police chief to fill the position permanently. 

Marcus Jones has been serving as acting chief since June. He has been with the Montgomery County Police Department for 34 years.

Elrich said he wants to see the culture of the department change, so he looked extensively outside the department for a new chief.

"I have heard from residents, community-based organizations, labor leaders, religious leaders and County Council members, who have clearly stated what they want to see in their police chief," Elrich said in a statement. "They don’t want the status quo. They want to see changes that will make a good department even better and rebuild trust that has been shaken by some recent interactions between officers and members of the public."

Jones said he is committed to making the changes Elrich wants.

In July, video surfaced showing an officer driving his knee into the head of a man who appears to have his hands tied behind his back.

In May, an officer was caught on camera using the N-word to a group of black men.

The County Council must approve Elrich's nomination.

“In my opinion Jones has always been a strong contender for this post and has comported himself with professionalism throughout the selection process," Council President Nancy Navarro said in a statement.

Elrich's previous pick, Tonya Chapman, withdrew from consideration last month after meeting privately with members of the county council.

In Portsmouth, Virginia, Chapman was the first black woman to lead a city police force in the commonwealth. But she said bias and racist and sexist attitudes forced her departure after three years. In a statement, said she was forced to resign "under duress."

Longtime Montgomery County Police Chief Thomas Manger stepped down earlier this year after 15 years of service.

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