Frederick’s search for a new city police chief is down to two, with the finalists scheduled to speak with the public next week.

Jason Lando, a commander with the Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania) Bureau of Police, and Cleveland Spruill, the chief of police in Athens-Clarke County, Georgia, will each be given one hour to introduce themselves and answer submitted questions at an event Tuesday.

The forum comes near the end of a search that began in September and included a search committee of residents that held meetings with members of the community and narrowed 35 applications to a final seven.

Another committee of members from the city’s leadership team then narrowed the group further.

Sometime following the forum, Mayor Michael O’Connor will pick a candidate to present to the Board of Aldermen.

The process was difficult because of the high quality of applicants the city received, O’Connor said Wednesday.

Spruill’s philosophy and thoughts on policing largely fit with the long-term plan for the Frederick Police Department, O’Connor said, while the bureau in Pittsburgh that Lando commands is about the size of Frederick.

“These were highly ranked candidates at every step of the process,” he said.

Lando and Spruill will answer submitted questions from the community on Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.

Questions for the forum must be submitted in advance and will be posed to the two finalists by a moderator to maximize each candidate’s time to respond, according to an announcement from the city.

Questions can be submitted at

The two finalists will also hold a forum with members of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 91.

During interviews, both candidates discussed how ideas of policing have changed in 2020, with protests over police violence and racial discrimination, O’Connor said.

If the city had started its process soon after Chief Ed Hargis retired in February, they would have had different conversations than they did in their eventual interviews, O’Connor said.

Those changes did a lot to shape the conversation at every step of the city’s process, according to the mayor, who thinks both finalists understand how ideas of policing have changed and evolved.

Follow Ryan Marshall on Twitter: @RMarshallFNP

Ryan Marshall is the transportation and growth and development reporter for the News-Post. He can be reached at

(29) comments


who are they kidding. They have to pick the Black guy, otherwise Frederick will be considered a racist city. So we gone backwards to the color of your skin is more than important than your content.

Comment deleted.

Did he apply, Pb? Nope. Your point, other than yet another rule-breaking ad-hominem attack?


The people in Frederick, MD would have a fit if we had a Black Police Chief

PurplePickles aka L&M


You think so? But yeah some “people” would have a fit, but some people wouldn’t have a fit. So I guess it just depends on your perspective of a Black Police Chief?


I'm not so sure ecco. I tend to think most people are looking for competence more than complexion.

PurplePickles aka L&M

Has anyone seen NewMarketParent lately?

I would like to speak with him about a book collaboration?

PurplePickles aka L&M

Me I would prefer the next police chief not to be racist nor have any hidden bias towards black and brown people. I think the whole Alderman Facebook smearing fiasco is a great indicator who the next police chief should be. One of these candidates will not be a closeted racist nor hold any bias towards black or brown people. I guess it will just depend on what the selection committee values more?

PurplePickles aka L&M

Also after finding out the bomber was white in Tennessee and that the FBI/law enforcement was biased because the dude was a white man, (had he been a POC/Muslim you know what would have happened when they were tipped off) perhaps having a police chief that isn’t white will actually keep us safer? Just a thought..,,


Thank you for your usual scree that paints anyone who is not your approved racial/political/ethnic/religious makeup as guilty of being a racist or unable to do a good job. The added touch of referring to a domestic terrorist was typical also.

PurplePickles aka L&M


Huh? Can you please tell me who my approved groups are, I guess I’m tad confused as to what I’m approving too? Much thanks for keeping me honest!

And the white guy you just bravely told the truth about, thank you, I haven’t actually seen him called that in the press yet? Has the press suddenly become brave, did I miss the press being brave?


So, did no one currently on the force apply for the position? If they did, it must be they clearly don't get what the politicians want so why do they continue to be on the force one might ask? It also seems to say loyalty won't be rewarded and no one currently on the force are capable of taking up and/or learning the duties. Is that true Frederick politicians? Finally, the idea of policing should not have changed over time nor should 2020 have made it any different. To me it should always be what was on the side of the police cars in Adam-12 "To protect and to serve." If someone is not doing that, they shouldn't be on the force.

PurplePickles aka L&M


Spoken like someone who sees the world through the eyes of (white) privilege. Society has changed so should policing. Adam-12 wasn’t even the real world when it was on TV way back then.


Exactly what is wrong with following the principles of "To protect and to serve?" It applies to "the people"...all the people. I made no qualifying statements that said it should not apply to any subset of people. There has and always will be racism and other isms (such as bias for or against a culture) that should be dealt with as my last sentence alluded to (apparently you were not able to make that connection and went right to the privilege argument). Privilege has nothing to do with expecting the police to protect and serve "the people." Why do you automatically assume the worse in people and cast aspersions on them when you have absolutely no real evidence to support your allegations? You just can't resist personal attacks or assuming the worst of people can you? My statement " must be they clearly don't get what the politicians want so why do they continue to be on the force one might ask?" clearly went right over your head because it was a statement about the current force and if it doesn't meet the desired principles why are those who don't measure up then kept on the force? BTWA Adam 12 wasn't the real world but the stories were based actual cases (just like Dragnet) and the motto "To Protect and to Serve" has been their official motto since November 4, 1963 (see: It appears that you are what you condemn.

PurplePickles aka L&M


Have you ever heard of The Black Lives Matter movement?

It isn’t clear from your last statement that you had? Just Google Black Lives Matter, consider your sources and start learning, cool?


Your refusal to answer my simple question and your condescending attitude towards myself and others again says it all. You are now on my ignore list as being irrelevant and not worthy of future responses no matter how stupid or outrageous or even correct your statements may be.


MD1756 [thumbup][thumbup][thumbup][thumbup]


"A rolling stone gathers no moss is an old proverb, credited to Publilius Syrus, who in his Sententiae states, People who are always moving, with no roots in one place or another, avoid responsibilities and cares."

Oct 20, 2020

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A Pittsburgh Police commander could become the next chief of police in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Commander Jason Lando is among six finalists that are being interviewed for the position.

Lando has been on the hunt for chief of police jobs in several cities.

Earlier this week, Lando was also named one of 10 finalists for a chief of police position in Arlington, Texas.

January 19, 2019

Two Pittsburgh police commanders and other public safety employees who formed a private for-profit business to sell training they teach for free as part of their jobs may have run afoul of the city’s ethics code, the mayor’s spokesman said Wednesday.


January 12, 2019

ATHENS, Ga. — Manager Blaine Williams announced Friday that Cleveland Lee Spruill Sr. has been named the new chief of the Athens-Clarke County Police Department.

“After careful consideration and based on extensive feedback from the citizens and officers about what they want to see in our new Police Chief, I believe that Chief Spruill will be an exceptional fit for Athens-Clarke County,” says Williams.

June 17, 2020

“50/10 Plan to Re-imagine Public Safety” floated by two Athens Clarke commissioners, many of them part of an organized effort. The plan aims to change the way policing is conducted here, halving the size of the police force over a 10-year period.

Last year, Athens-Clarke police killed six people, many or all with mental issues, some of them armed with weapons.


Patrick O'Brien Frederick Jun 12, 2020 - His LTE had it RIGHT.

Letter to the Editor

Elected officials created a lot of this mess

Hmmm... can the residency requirements for mayor and aldermen be removed, if so, we could go on a nationwide search for their replacements?


Great background research teadoff. After a national search, this is the best they could do? How much is Frederick paying these "recruiters"? Wasn't anyone in the FCPD qualified, that didn't have this baggage?



Oct 20, 2020

By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A Pittsburgh Police commander could become the next chief of police in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Commander Jason Lando is among six finalists that are being interviewed for the position.

Lando has been on the hunt for chief of police jobs in several cities.

Earlier this week, Lando was also named one of 10 finalists for a chief of police position in Arlington, Texas.

Aug 18, 2020

Iowa City residents invited to meet police chief candidates next week

Nov 23, 2020

The City of Tacoma is seeking an experienced, transformational leader

to serve as its next Chief of Police for the Tacoma Police Department.

June 18, 2020

Bend, Oregon police chief candidates discuss recent events, earning community’s trust

Nov 2, 2020

Oakland California

Commander Jason Lando is a 20-year veteran of the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania police, where he heads the narcotics and vice unit. Lando has previously been a finalist for police chief in at least five cities, including Waco, Tex., Milwaukee, Iowa City, Iowa, Boulder, and Bend, Ore. He is also in the running for top cop in Arlington, Tex.



Excuse me, but your bias and impartiality are worse than some of the others on this board.

You start your post with a quote that implies that people are moving around to avoid responsibility and prove that they don't care. You follow this up with a hatchet job on one of the finalists that has nothing to do with your opening quote.

You post several articles about CMDR. Lando was considered for various positions and about a possible ethics concern because of the private training company he started with other Pittsburgh police officers. You missed/did not look for/or ignored the article that indicates that the local ethics board gave the green light to CMDR Lando's business.

Suppose you think that Chief Spruill is the better candidate for Frederick City Chief (even though he is more likely to fit your opening quote than CMDR Lando) that is fine. In theory, this is a free country, and we are welcome to our own opinion. However, do everyone a favor and don't try and palm off a rather bad hatchet job as a 'community service'. (eyeroll)


Pick both and cut headcount in other worthless departments such as Economic Development.


Maybe we can all vote on Facebook for our favorite candidate?


Or, see what Twitter says, & go with that.


why did/do the selection committee have to go outside the department for a chief of seems like the people in the city is/are not good enough for the job.


Their hair styles both fit in...[innocent]


The outcome is already known. This mayor is so predictable. His comments show it.


You are right!


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