Rich O'Neill, president of the Seattle Police Officer's Guild, says that KING 5 television got the story wrong earlier this week when it reported, "The Seattle Police Officers Guild and the Seattle Police Management Association both say their top choice for Seattle's top cop is Rick Braziel, the current police chief in Sacramento, Calif."
The announcement had come as an obvious surprise: The Seattle police guild traditionally backs its own members, such as Seattle's interim chief John Diaz, who has been with the SPD for 30 years. Backing Braziel, from Sacramento, appeared to be a scathing repudiation.
But yesterday on the Dave Ross radio show, O'Neill said his comments to KING 5 were reported out of context. "We met with the mayor yesterday and what we said was this: Out of the three candidates, in my view it comes down to internal versus external," O'Neill said on KIRO Radio. "If he wants to go internal, Chief Diaz has done a great job over the last year... If he wants to go external, what I said was by far Braziel from Sacramento is the best candidate because he’s head and shoulders—in our opinion—above Chief Davis."
"I've been a proponent all along for an internal candidate," adds O'Neill, who took part in Mayor Mike McGinn's police chief search committee.
Calls to Linda Brill, who reported the story, and Lt. Eric Sano, spokesman for the Police Management Association (which was also reported as supporting Braziel), have not yet been returned. I'll update the post when I hear back.