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San Francisco Officials Hopeful Police Chief Won't Be Leaving

SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) – A feeling of uncertainty continued to hang over the San Francisco Police Department Thursday evening as questions remained over who will take over the department if the chief decides to take a job with the LAPD.

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott has been in his position for 16 months now. Some of the tactics he instituted to speed reform during his brief tenure are just starting to show results.

Earlier this week, the LA Times reported Scott is on a short list to replace Chief Charlie Beck and take over LAPD next month.

It's something San Francisco politicians told KPIX 5 they weren't expecting.

"Well, I was stunned," said San Francisco Supervisor Jeff Sheehy.

Mayor Mark Farrell wouldn't talk about looking for a replacement for Scott or how his departure would impact the department.

Instead he focused on some of Scott's priorities coming to fruition.

"You know what? The things we're doing are starting to work and that's the great news," said Farrell.

Just last month, the department announced car break-ins are down 17 percent compared to last year. Mayor Farrell said an announcement about increased staffing is next.

"We've been working very closely since I took office, particularly around police staffing," said Farrell. "We're about to finalize that analysis that he's very excited about and so am I."

Scott took over the embattled police department after Chief Greg Suhr was let go. At that time, the department faced controversy over several fatal police shootings, as well as racist and homophobic text messages between police officers.

The hope was that Scott would bring change. City leaders say he has.

"I think he was bringing not just reform, but innovation," said Sheehy. "And for me, it would be heartbreaking for him to leave."

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