Richland police chief search must start over

Tri-City Herald

Richland is going back to hunt for a new police chief after rejecting its two finalists.

City officials have been hunting for a new chief since Chris Skinner left in April to become police chief in Eugene, Ore.

The city hired Ralph Andersen and Associates, a California-based recruitment firm, to lead the search for a new chief, and the firm helped narrow the choice to two finalists.

The candidates, Sunnyside Chief Al Escalera and Yakima Chief Dominic Rizzi Jr., visited the city in late August for the final interviews. A community open house also was held.

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Albert Escalera

“Every effort was made to execute a fair, thorough and unbiased process,” city officials said in Tuesday statement. “Understandably, recruitment efforts of this nature can be an arduous process and do not always result in a successful candidate.”

City Manager Cindy Reents said in the statement she did not find the right candidate to fill the position.

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Dominic Rizzi

For now, interim police Chief Jeff Taylor will continue leading the department.

“I appreciate the patience of the community throughout this very important process,” Reents said in the release. “The city council and I are committed to this process and are determined to find the right fit for our city.”

Cameron Probert: 509-582-1402; Twitter: @cameroncprobert