Norfolk, Va. (NPD) –The Norfolk Police Department has gone virtual in its response to certain calls for service.
A new program dubbed "NPD Live" is set to become one of the first virtual law enforcement response programs in Hampton Roads. Beginning on October 16, 2020, residents who call the Emergency Operations Center to report a non-emergency event can now speak with a police officer virtually by using Webex, a social networking platform.
“Our responsibility to the community is to be available, valuable, and visible,” said Chief Larry D. Boone. “If we can effectively communicate with friends, family, and co-workers using this technology in the midst the pandemic and during our everyday lives, why not use it to respond to our residents? This not only protects our officers and residents from exposure to COVID-19, but it also supports the residents desire to be heard and seen by a law enforcement officer.”
“NPD Live” will be made available for virtual calls 24-hours a day. If a citizen selects this virtual response option, they will be transferred by dispatch to a sworn police officer who will send a link to start the meeting. During the virtual response, the officer can take an incident report and assist the citizen with their crime related matters the same as they would in person.
“This will be a new way for us to respond to the needs of the community and I strongly believe this program is going to benefit our residents and improve our patrol officer’s availability to respond to time-sensitive calls,” said Chief Larry D. Boone. “Innovation is the NPD way, and I look forward to the positive impact ‘NPD Live’ will have on our community.”