Protest Greets New Greensboro Police Chief

Protest Greets New Greensboro Police Chief

5:53pm Mar 12, 2015
Greensboro Police Chief Wayne Scott talks to reporters following a press conference Thursday.
WFDD Photo by Paul Garber

Greensboro has a new police chief. But the appointment of deputy chief Wayne Scott to the top job has generated some controversy.

A small group of protesters disrupted a press conference introducing Scott as chief, calling him a "bad choice". Some walked out, calling the selection process a joke. Critics have said the hiring format wasn’t open enough.

City Manager Jim Westmoreland defended the steps that led to Scott’s selection.

“I believe the process worked for me and the city of Greensboro – we were able to bring the two best candidates forward. At the end of the day, I had a very difficult decision to make. I feel confident in the decision. I feel confident in the process,” he says.

Scott is a 24-year veteran of the Greensboro Police Department who says as chief he wants to build bridges into the community. He was picked over one other finalist - Danielle Outlaw, a deputy chief from Oakland, California.

Scott says he was disappointed by the protesters, but says it won’t change how he plans to build trust in the community.

“I obviously have critics, I had critics here today. But I will tell you I have a lot of people that were in support of me as well. But I’m not going to let the critics stop me. I’m actually going to engage each and every one of them.  I believe that part of building bridges in not giving up,” he says.

Scott does have support - his fellow officers gave Scott him a lengthy ovation when he was formerly introduced.

Scott replaces former chief Ken Miller, who left the department last year.

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