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48 apply for Cuero police chief job

By Sonny Long
Nov. 23, 2010 at 5:23 a.m.

Raymie Zella

THE COMMITTEEThe following people are on the committee to review applicants for Cuero police chief:

Peggy Mayer, DeWitt County justice of the peace

Sgt. Mike Cantu, Texas Department of Public Safety

Tony Allen, city councilman and former Cuero police chief

Jim Mann, retired Brazos County chief deputy with 23 years in law enforcement

Willie Carter, Cuero resident

The vacant position of Cuero police chief has drawn interest from 48 applicants.

"There were five or six who really stood out with very good qualifications," city manager Raymie Zella said after a quick review of the applicants. "Almost all of them hold the Master Peace Officer Certification. At least 10 live in or around DeWitt County."

Zella said a committee was formed to review the applications and help narrow the search.

The committee plans to begin meeting Monday, Zella said.

"Hopefully we can cut it down to five or fewer by the end of next week and then set up interviews," he said.

The city manager said he and the committee will conduct the interviews.

The police department will also be involved in the process.

"Those applicants called in for interviews will then be allowed to go to the police department and meet with interim chief Capt. Steven Ellis and his command staff," Zella said. "They will be able to ask questions of each other and the applicant, tell them how he or she would run the department, what to expect and so forth."

No one on the current police force applied for the position.

Zella said the officers can weigh in on who they think might be the best fit for them. Committee members will also rank the candidates in order of preference.

"I will put it all together and make a decision, possibly the first week of January" said Zella.

The police chief's position became vacant when Chris Hernandez resigned Sept. 29. Hernandez served as interim chief for 16 months until Sept. 2009 when he was named the permanent replacement for former chief Glenn Mutchler who retired in July 2008.

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