Interim Dallas Police Chief Has Big Shoes to Fill

DALLAS -- There's a new guy in one of the toughest jobs in Dallas. After taking over for retiring DPD Chief David Brown earlier in the week, Interim Chief David Pughes introduced himself to the public Friday morning.

"The role that I've stepped into as interim chief was unexpected," Pughes told reporters.  "I didn't see this coming.  I thought, 'Well, this is going to be a challenge.'"

He's right about that.  The 28-year veteran is now the top cop in a force of close to 3,500 officers, during a time when police everywhere are having to work hard to maintain public trust.

"The trust can be broken down in one incident, or one day," said Pughes.  "So you can never stop trying to build upon that trust, so that'll be an important aspect going forward."

Another challenge?  Filling some pretty big shoes.

Today marks three months since the downtown ambush shooting that killed five police officers and put the Dallas Police Department in the national spotlight.  Chief Brown's leadership in that impossible situation earned him praise from nearly everyone and will make him a tough act to follow.

"I'm not even trying to get close to that," Pughes said.  "I'm just trying to do the job to the best of my ability, where everybody says, 'You know what, while he filled in for Chief Brown, and before the new chief came, he really did a good job.'"

Pughes says he won't be applying to be the new permanent chief.  He prefers the job he had up until a few days ago.  As Executive Assistant Chief, he had a more hands-on role in decision-making in the department and more time to spend with his teenaged children.

But until the city hires the next guy, welcome to the hot seat, Chief Pughes.