NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) – As communities rallied across the city to heighten crime awareness and drug prevention, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu chose the 31st Annual National Night Out Against Crime to announce the new Chief of Police.
WGNO News Reporter Darian Trotter has details and reaction from Algiers.
A big high school marching band set the tone for a big announcement in Algiers.
Some of the city’s most notable leaders were there as New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu officially named Michael Harrison the New Orleans Chief of Police.
“You know, he’s a guy who’s got great experience, 23 years. National Guard. He has a master’s degree in criminal justice. He’s a guy who’s got great integrity and he’s got a really nice touch,” Landrieu said.
Harrison was named Interim Chief back in August, when former Chief Ronal Serpas announced his retirement.
Since then, the New Orleans native has been building stronger relationships between police and the public.
“The first thing I’m going to do is the same thing I’ve been doing, building relationships that were never built and repairing the ones that were broken. So as I make my way around the city that’s not going to stop.” “That will continue every day of my career,” Harrison said.
The announcement was made in Harrison’s back yard during National Night Out Against Crime.
“He has people from his community, his family and close friends. Everybody’s here to cheer him on and congratulate him,” said neighbor Shermeka Brown.
“And there really isn’t a better time to talk about it than on a night when everybody in the city is rallying to make sure that we have a city of peace,” Landrieu added.
Mayor Landrieu says Harrison was selected after a nationwide search.
“And I’m pleased to tell you that Michael Harrison really rose to the level of somebody that I know is going to be a great Chief.
“I wish him all the best and I hope for the best of success in the future,” neighbor Jeffrey Smoyer said.
Landrieu believes Harrison’s appointment will help boost morale at the NOPD, because he was selected from within.