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Antonio Gilliam rescinds acceptance of Tallahassee Police Chief position

Posted at 1:39 PM, Dec 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-19 18:24:06-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Antonio Gilliam will no longer serve as Tallahassee's next police chief, according to the City of Tallahassee.

The City of Tallahassee confirmed that Gilliam rescinded his acceptance of the police chief position Thursday. In the meantime, Interim Chief Steve Outlaw will continue to lead TPD.

Gilliam was set to officially start the top cop position in Tallahassee on Jan. 6.

ABC 27 has obtained a copy of the memo that was sent by St. Pete Police Chief Anthony Holloway stating that Assistant Chief Gilliam will be assigned to Administrative Services Bureau on Jan 6.

Tallahassee city commissioner Jeremy Matlow said the deal with Gilliam fell apart during negotiations with the city manager.

He said Gilliam requested the right to hiring his command staff. As part of that a six year agreement, Gilliam wanted to add a clause that kept him from being fired at will.

However, Matlow said Gilliam was unable to get those requests granted after weeks of negotiation. The commissioner said the search was "mishandled" and vowed to do a thorough investigation into what happened during negotiations.

Alison Faris with the City of Tallahassee sent the following statement to WTXL:

Today, I was notified by Antonio Gilliam of his decision to rescind his acceptance of the employment agreement he signed on December 4, 2019, committing to be Tallahassee’s Police Chief. This news is unexpected, and I am disappointed that he has chosen to step away at this point in the process. We will take the time necessary to determine next steps in moving forward. In the meantime, Chief Steve Outlaw will continue to lead the department. I have full confidence in the Tallahassee Police Department and their ability to continue meeting the challenges we face as a community and the expectations of our residents.

Gilliam sent a two and half page letter to ABC 27 explaining his decision to walk away from the position. You can read the full letter below:

Antonio Gilliam explanation... by WTXL ABC 27 on Scribd

Gilliam was selected to be Tallahassee's new police chief on December 4 after an extensive nationwide search. Former TPD Chief Michael DeLeo submitted his letter of resignation on June 12.

The other two finalists for the job were TPD Majors Lawrence Revell and Lonnie Scott.

This is a developing story.