ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor-elect Rick Kriseman announced Wednesday that he will make Assistant Chief David DeKay the interim police chief when Chief Chuck Harmon retires.
DeKay, a 31-year veteran, oversees the department's Investigative Services Bureau and must retire no later than November 2014 because of the state's deferred retirement program.
The choice comes as no surprise. The other assistant chiefs, Melanie Bevan and Luke Williams, have both said they would seek the top post.
Kriseman said he has "tremendous confidence" in DeKay to lead the department.
Harmon announced his retirement plans in September. Mayor Bill Foster then launched a nationwide search for a new chief. The application period ends Friday, and Kriseman's spokesman said those applicants would still be considered for the job.
Kriseman, who takes office Jan. 2, said he will hire an outside firm to conduct the search with the hopes of increasing the applicant pool. Foster had opted to use city staff to do the search.