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Brooklyn Center finds its new police chief close to home

The city announced Hennepin County Sheriff's Lt. Kellace McDaniel will lead the department's next chapter following an intensive nationwide search.

BROOKLYN CENTER, Minn. — The city of Brooklyn Center took an exhaustive look at candidates across the country, but eventually turned to a local law enforcement professional as the community's next police chief. 

City Manager Dr. Reginald Edwards announced Thursday that Hennepin County Sheriff's Lieutenant Kellace McDaniel will lead the department as it moves into the next chapter of keeping the community safe. The position has been staffed by an interim chief since the resignation of former chief Tim Gannon following the fatal shooting of Daunte Wright on April 11, 2021. 

In its announcement the city cites McDaniel's 25 years in law enforcement, where he worked in court services, homeland security, investigations, adult detention, narcotics and perhaps most importantly, community engagement. He acknowledged during a community "meet-and-greet" session the turmoil that boiled over in Brooklyn Center following Wright's fatal shooting by then-officer Kim Potter. 

"Part of coming to this community, being a community engagement team advocate, is getting community policing and the community back together… it is very important," McDaniel told citizens. "It's part of the healing process and we are all trying to heal... it has been a tough three years for everyone."

McDaniel's selection comes after an intensive six-month national search that involved community input, surveys, focus group meetings and meetings for residents to meet the candidates. His official first day working with the City of Brooklyn Center will be Monday, June 27.

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