Aurora names two finalists for open police chief job

Kevin J. Beaty / Denverite
An Aurora police cruiser outside the Town Center at Aurora mall on Friday, Dec. 27, 2019.

Aurora has named two finalists for its next police chief and it wants community members to help with the interview process. 

The finalists are men and both are from outside Colorado.

The finalists:

City of Aurora
Scott Ebner
  • Scott Ebner, a retired lieutenant colonel and Deputy Superintendent of Administration for New Jersey State Police
City of Aurora
David Franklin
  • David Franklin, the chief of staff at the Albuquerque Police Department in Albuquerque, N.M.

The selection process will be a three-day in-person series of meetings with the police department, a community panel, culture, faith-based and business community partners. And that’s before they meet with the mayor, city council members and other city officials. 

Aurora wants the community to submit questions to the finalists and then provide feedback after the interviews set for Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 26-27. 

According to a release from the city, the recruiting firm hired specializes in police executives and conducted a national search.  Public Sector Search & Consulting also recently worked with Northglenn, Boulder, Thornton and Wheat Ridge. 

Earlier in the day, the city announced three finalists, but Scott Booth, the Danville, Virginia, police chief, withdrew from the interview process. City officials said they might reconsider some of the applicants who were semi-finalists.

The last full-time chief, Vanessa Wilson — who was the first woman in the city's history to hold the role — was fired in April. City officials said Wilson had not effectively managed the department and could not build up the department's morale during her two-year stint as chief. After taking over, Wilson was left to deal with the aftermath of Elijah McClain's death in 2019, which came after a violent arrest involving three Aurora police officers and two paramedics.