Shreveport mayor selects new police chief

Mayor Adrian Perkins has selected current substitute police chief, Wayne Smith, as the new...
Mayor Adrian Perkins has selected current substitute police chief, Wayne Smith, as the new chief for the Shreveport Police Department.(KSLA)
Published: Jan. 26, 2022 at 5:06 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 26, 2022 at 4:15 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - In an early afternoon news conference on Wednesday, Jan. 26, Shreveport Mayor Adrian Perkins announced his nomination for the next Shreveport police chief.

Perkins announced current substitute police chief, Wayne Smith, as his selection for the job. The Shreveport City Council will now have to approve or reject the mayor’s choice. If approved, Smith will then undergo a “working test period” for a year.

Smith said his number one priority as chief will be to assure the safety and well being of the community.

He is a 41-year veteran of SPD. Smith graduated from Coushatta High School in 1977. He earned his bachelor of science from Wiley College in 1998 and his MBA from Centenary College in 2007. Smith is married and has three children.

Nine candidates from throughout the state applied for the position. Each passed the required Civil Service exam.

Below are the candidates and their scores:

Samuel Wyatt94Bossier Police Department (former) (1993-2009)sergeant (former)
Marcus Mitchell92Shreveport Police Department (former) (2009-21)chief administrative assistant (former)
Wayne Smith89Shreveport Police Department (1980-present)substitute chief
Jason Frazier87Shreveport Police Department (2004-present)sergeant/executive officer/terminal agency coordinator
Dorian Brabham86Lafayette Police Department (2002-present)sergeant
Michael Jones86Shreveport Police Department (2000-present)sergeant
Michael Tyler84Shreveport Police Department (1997-present)sergeant
Kenneth Wall83Sulphur Police Department (2003-present)captain
Marcus Hines80Shreveport Police Department (2005-present)corporal

During the news conference, Perkins was asked why the other eight candidates were not interviewed for the job. The mayor responded that it is not legally required to interview the candidates and that he has that level of confidence in Smith.

Under state Civil Service Law and the City Charter, interviewing candidates is not mandatory. The job of police chief in Shreveport is called a “classified civil service position.” Anyone wanting the job has to meet certain requirements; in this case, that includes a specified level of education, specified time on the job as a cop and a specified amount of supervisory experience.

After meeting those requirements and scoring at least 75% on the competitive exam, you are added to the list of certified candidates. The list and the candidates’ application packets are then sent to the appointing authority, which in this case is Perkins.

As appointing authority, Perkins is exclusively entitled to map out how the hiring process goes from there and who to interview, if anyone. Once the mayor picks his choice for police chief, the City Council is informed. The City Council then decides whether to approve or deny his selection.

“We have the confidence in Chief Smith by looking at the applications, by going thoroughly through the applications. Again this is state law, this isn’t the first time a mayor has made a selection without interviewing candidates,” Perkins said.

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