Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Matt Baggott replacement: Now four top officers in running for the job

PSNI Chief Con. Matt Baggott
PSNI Chief Con. Matt Baggott

Four current PSNI Assistant Chief Constables are now in the running for the job as Northern Ireland's most senior police officer.

George Hamilton remains the frontrunner to replace outgoing Chief Constable Matt Baggott.

Sources within the Policing Board – which is responsible for the recruitment process – say it is Mr Hamilton's to lose.

He is in charge of rural policing and has been with the police since joining the RUC in 1985.

Before his appointment as ACC Crime in Strathclyde in 2009 he had been Chief Superintendent and District Commander in B District.

Also in the running is Alistair Finlay, the Scottish-born officer responsible for the Operational Support Department.

He joined the PSNI from Strathclyde Police in 2006.

Will Kerr and Drew Harris are now also candidates.

Mr Kerr has 20 years' experience in a range of operational roles across Northern Ireland.

Mr Harris joined the RUC in 1983 and holds the ACPO Hate Crime Portfolio.

All four men have also been linked to the soon-to-be-vacant Deputy Chief Constable position.

Outside candidates for Chief Constable include Simon Edens, Deputy Chief Constable of Leicestershire Police. He started his career with the RUC, which he served for 10 years.

Chief Constable Mark Gilmore of West Yorkshire Police is also a former RUC officer and in 2009 he was appointed Assistant Chief Constable of West Yorkshire police, becoming chief last year.

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