Taft Chief of Police says he may run after his retirement He also discusses Department history and incoming chief

Ed Whiting is retiring as Taft Chief of Police in a little over two months, but he may still be a part of city government in the future.
Whiting, talking about the succession to incoming Chief of Police Damon McMinn at the Taft Chamber of Commerce Sit n' Sip t a week ago, said he might go into local politics.

"I'm still mulling over whether or not I will run for city council in the next election or not," he said.

Whiting, who moved to Taft when he became chief at the start of 2012, said he plans to stay in Taft and may take another job after he retires.

"Robyn (his wife) and I like it here. The people are friendly, the crime rate is low and the traffic is easy," he said.

Whiting is retiring as the 11th chief in the history of the department, which dates back to 1925, 15 years after the city was incorporated.
From 1910 to 1925, the city had two marshals, he said.

McMinn, the son of the tenth Chief of Police Ken McMinn, is something of a rarity: A chief not promoted from within the ranks.

"Typically we like to have out chief come from inside the department," Whiting said.

Charles Scott, hired in 1985, was the last chief that didn't come from within the department.

"Damon is the best fit," Whiting said. "He knows the community. He's worked out here. He knows the job."

Damon McMinn started as a correctional officer at the Taft Community Correctional Facility and worked there for 8 years, becoming a correctional lieutenant.

He worked three years for the Porterville Police Department, then spent 16 years with the Kern County Sheriff's Office working as in the patrol division, in search and rescue and internal affairs.

"He's very versed both with supervision and administration," Whiting said.

McMinn will begin shadowing Whiting at the start of February and take over on March 1.