BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - Two months after tragedy struck the Bay St. Louis Police Department with the sudden death of former Police Chief Mike DeNardo, the position left behind remains vacant.
As the interview process moves forward, Mayor Les Fillingame is confident the right person will fill the spot.
"It's gonna be tough, we have some really tremendous candidates," said Fillingame. "The one thing that is pretty evident, we will end up with a very qualified police chief."
A team sifting through the applications will start in-person interviews of the top 10 - 12 candidates the second week of November. Fillingame hopes to have a candidate to recommend to the city council at the Nov. 22 meeting.
"In the interview process we have some very credible prospects, and give it the due diligence it deserves and not rush the process and narrow it down finish interviews by the end of next week," said the mayor.
Because none of the department's current officers applied for the opening, all 25 prospective candidates are external. Several people from across the Coast community and surrounding areas have applied.
"I don't find it unusual under the circumstances. We have some guys growing very rapidly in their position, and I think to a person they feel like they'd like to have a little more position before they would consider being a chef."
Fillingame adds that applicants have been screened by staff, including the interim police chief, current law enforcement professionals.