Chicago residents get to weigh in on city's next top cop

Who will be Chicago’s next top cop?

The newly formed Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability held one of four public forums on Tuesday, taking in feedback on what it takes to be the next Chicago Police Department superintendent.

"Make sure all your officers and you are concerned with valuing the life of every Chicago citizens, especially marginalized Black folks," one speaker said.

For the first time ever, Chicagoans gave their two cents on what qualities the city's next top cop should have.

"We ask that you take this feedback and actually listen to the community," said resident Princess Shaw.

A member of CPD’s Bureau of Counterterrorism weighed in on the decision.

"That’s what I ask of the next superintendent: compassion, empathy, and be open-minded," said Nathaniel Warner.


The job application closes on May 7th, and days later Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson will be sworn in. He will be handed the names of the top three candidates, and he can choose from that list.

If he doesn't select a candidate from the list, the entire process starts over, according to the ordinance.

The new head of CPD wouldn't be announced until sometime in July.

"We usually hear about it once a selection has been made and their gonna go before the City Council to be formally sworn in. And so with this process, it is allowing people to weigh in on what this looks like. So as we're interviewing candidates, as we're asking questions, it will help us to frame the sort of questions that we're asking. It will also help us to frame the rubric that we'll leverage in terms of what we've heard from the everyday Chicagoan," said Remel Terry, Community Commission for Public Safety.

Internally, several names have emerged. At the meeting on Tuesday, one of those same names was thrown into the search.

On the force since the 90s, Chief Ernest Cato was a finalist for superintendent in the past but retired. A source says he is interested in the job.

Eric Carter is serving as Chicago's interim top cop. It's unknown if he wants to stay in the role.

The next public meeting is April 19th at Saint Sabina Church from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the evening.