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Coulee Dam narrows its police chief search to two


Coulee Dam has narrowed the field of candidates for a new chief of police to two, the mayor said Tuesday.

The top candidates, from an original field of five, are Mark Farrel, a recently-retired colonel from Pinedale, Wyoming, and Paul Bowden, who has served as chief in Wilbur for two years.

Farrel currently lives in the Seattle area. Bowden is the husband of the Coulee Dam town clerk, Stefani Bowden.

Mayor Greg Wilder said the town’s civil service commission had forwarded three candidates for his consideration. He put together an interview committee that interviewed candidates Tuesday, then broke into three to rate them separately. He said the two groups of interviewers and he each came back with identical scores.

Wilder expects background checks on the two to take a week or two and negotiations with them for terms will start in a week or so.

Two earlier candidates didn’t clear background checks, Wilder said.

The town currently has one police sergeant and a 35-hour-per-week reserve officer. The civil service commission is looking for one full-time officer candidate.

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