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Phoenix-area policeman named interim police chief in Ferguson, Missouri

Glendale Police Commander Andre Anderson has been named interim police chief of Ferguson, Missouri.

Anderson, 50, was formally introduced Wednesday morning at a press conference.

He has 24 years of service with Glendale Police.

“He is extremely well-qualified,” Ferguson Mayor James Knowles told Reuters. “He will bring us a fresh perspective coming from outside the St. Louis region.”

Anderson would be joining another former Glendale civil servant — former city manager Ed Beasley, who is serving as interim city manager of Ferguson.

That city was torn apart by protests and racial unrest after a white police officer shot and killed a young, unarmed black man last summer.

The death of Michael Brown touched off confrontations between residents of the mostly black St. Louis suburb and police. Eventually Gov. Jay Nixon called a state of emergency.

Police Chief Tom Jackson resigned in March and an interim was named.

Anderson was a finalist for chief of police in Casa Grande, Arizona two years ago.

“Andre is uniquely and exceptionally qualified to serve as Ferguson’s interim police chief,” Glendale Police Chief Debora Black said in a statement.

“I have tremendous respect for Chief Anderson; I am confident he will serve members of the Ferguson community as capably as he has served the City of Glendale. We wish him the best of success!”