Police Commissioner Kathleen O’Toole is prepared to step aside as soon as Mayor Thomas Menino picks her replacement, so that the department can confront what officials expect will be a particularly bloody summer, says the Boston Globe. O’Toole said Tuesday she is resigning around July 1 to become inspector general of the 12,000-member Irish national police force. Menino said: ”There’s something missing, and I think there has to be a reenergizing of the Police Department.” Police commanders are planning their summer crime strategy this week; O’Toole acknowledged that some top commanders are struggling to stay focused as they compete against one another for her job. Two high-ranking police officials said that there is more infighting.
Some community leaders in high-crime areas have urged Menino to appoint a successor quickly and not mount an extensive national search for a new leader at a time when crime is on the increase. There were seven people killed in Boston last week, representing a third of the year’s 21 homicide victims. Some community leaders appeared to be coalescing behind Superintendent Robert Dunford, a longtime Menino ally who is in charge of the patrol force. The Rev. Bruce Wall, a minister who has influence at City Hall, has been supporting Transit Police Chief Joseph Carter because he wanted to see a member of a minority group selected for the job for the first time in Boston history, but Wall said Carter doesn’t appear to want to leave his current job. Wall plans to ask the mayor to remove O’Toole by Monday.