The County Council unanimously confirmed Marcus Jones to be the county’s 17th chief of police yesterday.
County Executive Marc Elrich nominated Jones, who had been serving as acting chief following Thomas Manger’s retirement in April, for the position on Oct. 21.
As he introduced Jones to the council yesterday, Elrich pointed out his strong résumé and community ties.
Jones has served on the police force for 34 years in positions including assistant chief of the Investigative Services Bureau, director of Major Crimes, and commander of the Drug Enforcement Unit. He also served as commander of the 3rd District, which includes most of Silver Spring.
“When called on to become the acting chief of police, Jones didn’t hesitate,” said Council President Nancy Navarro in a statement following the vote. “He jumped in with both feet because the men and women in his department needed a leader. As acting chief, he comported himself the way he always does—with integrity and professionalism. He also didn’t shy away from controversial issues, understanding that we have high expectations for all our county employees to protect and serve our community fairly.
“Jones is a police chief who has pledged to earn the trust of our community members. He knows our diverse community inside and out and is committed to implementing the changes necessary to ensure that our residents are treated equally,” she added.
The appointment follows a sometimes confusing search process that included a call from the council for significant community involvement. The county executive’s office also circulated an online survey asking for public input “about the qualities and character that we should seek in the candidates for this highly visible and responsible leadership role.”
Jones was the only internal candidate believed to be among the finalists. However, Elrich made it clear that he wanted someone from outside the department. Three leading candidates emerged, including:
- Takoma Park Police Chief Antonio DeVaul
- Tonya Chapman, former police chief in Portsmouth, Va., and
- Darryl McSwain, retired chief of the county’s Park Police, who was late candidate.
All three withdrew from consideration for various reasons. A fourth candidate was believed to be among the top choices, but that person’s name was never made public.
Jones’ appointment became official as of the council’s vote.
County Executive Marc Elrich introduced Jones to the council as Chief Administrative Officer Andrew Kleine looks on. Screenshot from the County Council’s YouTube channel.