San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee is hiring a veteran Los Angeles deputy police chief to lead the San Francisco force as it implements broad changes after several shootings of African Americans and Latinos, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. William Scott, who is 52 and African American, has been with the Los Angeles Police Department for more than 25 years and heads the department’s 1,700-member South Bureau, a nearly 58-square-mile territory. The selection of Scott is certain to surprise friends and critics of Lee alike, with the mayor looking outside the city rather than promoting acting Police Chief Toney Chaplin, which many city leaders expected and the officers’ union urged, or a member of his command staff.
As much as Scott’s longtime administrative experience figured into the decision — he did assignments in patrol, the detectives bureau, internal affairs and gang operations — he was sought just as much for his work in the department’s professional standards bureau dealing with police reform. “He has been part of a department that during the last 10 years has undergone its own transformation, implementing a variety of reforms under a consent decree with the Justice Department,” said one source. Scott, whose appointment does not require confirmation by the Police Commission, is expected to be on hand today when Lee introduces him at a City Hall news conference.