Mayor Brandon Johnson considers 3 finalists in search for new Chicago police superintendent

Craig Wall Image
Friday, July 14, 2023
Mayor Johnson considers 3 finalists in search for CPD superintendent
Mayor Brandon Johnson is considering CPD superintendent finalists Angel Novales, Shon Barnes and Larry Snelling.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The clock is now ticking for Mayor Brandon Johnson to make a decision about Chicago's next police superintendent.

"I think all three are ready to go. I think they're turnkey candidates," said Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability President Anthony Driver.

A four months-long search process culminated on Friday night in the selection of three finalists to be Chicago's next police superintendent.

They include CPD insiders Angel Novales, the chief of constitutional policing, and Larry Snelling, the counterterrorism chief. The one outsider is Shon Barnes, the Madison, Wisconsin police chief who worked for COPA for one year.

Johnson now has 30 days to make his pick or ask for three new candidates.

"We know this is a big job, arguably one of the biggest jobs in the country. So, we want to take our time to go through this process to interview the folks to see who is the right fit," said Deputy Mayor for Community Safety Garien Gatewood. "We'll go through the process until we get it right. We'll make sure we have time to interview the folks, and then come up with the right decision."

Longtime community activist Father Michael Pfleger, with St. Sabina Church, said it will be critical for the next superintendent to get a handle on crime, but also the pulse of the public.

"Personally, I want to see somebody from Chicago. I think we've gone through the outside, bringing somebody in. And, you know, where Chicago is at, particularly with the violence, we don't have a learning curve time," Pfleger said. "I think that whoever comes in has to have, not only is assessable to listening to community, but it's committed to work with the community."

And though some members of the community commission pushed for a woman to be among the finalists, neither of the two under consideration made the cut, raising a few eyebrows.

"We were looking for the best of the best out of the applicant pool. We believe that we have found the best, but I share that sentiment," Driver said.

ABC7 reached out to all three of the finalists, but none of them immediately responded to our request for comment. The entire selection process is expected to take until sometime this fall before a new superintendent is finally selected and approved.