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Former Red Bank Police Chief Tim Christol

The Chattanooga Police Department isn't the only local law enforcement agency in need of a new chief: Red Bank city officials expect they'll have a new top cop in a month.

The 6 1/2-square-mile city has been in need of a new police chief since May, when Timothy Christol was fired by Red Bank City Manager Randall Smith. The city manager cited "personnel matters" as the reason for termination, but didn't provide any further details.

Now Smith has a list of 13 applicants, five of whom already work in the department. He said Monday he expects to pick a panel of three or four city officials to vet the candidates starting next week, with the goal of naming someone by the start of September.

"We're looking for somebody with the credentials," he said. "They need to have prior law enforcement experience, supervisory experience. Looking for leadership qualities."

Chief candidates

Daniel Seymour

Dan Aalberg IV

Tammie Delashmitt

Shane Dockery

Edward Noojin III

Randal Beach

David Ashburn

Rodney Shoap

Jason Morton

David Rigney

Wayne Jackson

Christopher Mathes

Robert Simpson

Whoever is named will take over a department that employs 26 people — 24 sworn officers and two civilians. Smith also pointed out the police budget of just under $1.9 million comprises a sizable chunk of the city's $6.1 million budget, so the next chief will need to help make the numbers work.

"We're a small town and we have a small budget," he said. "So someone has to understand budgeting and how to get the most bang for the buck with our budget."

From the perspective of law enforcement, Red Bank is in a unique situation because it's surrounded by Chattanooga. While Red Bank officers patrol their area, the department often partners with the Hamilton County Sheriff's Office or other agencies, as do the departments of other small cities in the area.

"There are 10 municipalities in Hamilton County and we all cooperate with each other, I think, extremely well, not only on police issues, but other things that come up. We try to assist and help each other as much as possible," Smith said.

"Whoever needs our help, if at all possible, we try our best to help, and they do the same thing for us too."

The responsibility of hiring a new chief rests solely with Smith, but Red Bank Mayor John Roberts said the city needs someone who can come at the job full steam and serve the approximate 12,000 residents well.

"The first thing we're looking for is someone who can care about the community, [who is] going to make sure that the job's done, and done correctly," he said.

Beyond that, he said, the police in Red Bank respond quickly and efficiently once they're called, and he'd like to see that continue.

"We're not looking for a 30-minute response time or a 45-minute response time, we're looking for a five-minute response," he said. "That's what you want from your police department."

Contact staff writer Emmett Gienapp at egienapp@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6731. Follow him on Twitter @emmettgienapp.

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