Austin police chief to keep his job -- despite city council members calling for a change in leadership
Austin Police Chief Brian Manley (screengrab)

Austin Police Chief Brian Manley will stay in his position, a city spokesperson confirmed in an email Thursday.

“I have had very pointed conversations with Chief Manley over the last several weeks,” City Manager Spencer Cronk also said in the email. “He has assured me he is sincerely committed to making the reforms necessary.”

Local activists have called for Manley to be fired, but the police chief cannot be fired, per state law. Instead, he can only be demoted to the position he held before chief, and the only person who has the power to do that is Cronk.

Over the past two weeks, five council members publicly called for new leadership of the police department or asked Manley to resign, after police seriously injured at least two people during protests against systemic racism and police violence.

"I believe the honorable thing would be for you to resign,” Council Member Greg Casar told Manley earlier this month.

by Audrey McGlinchy