Question One:

Norfolk Police Department is committed to a partnership with the Center for Policing Equity and is using data driven intervention strategies and redesigning public safety systems to foster improved relations between the Department and the various constituencies within Norfolk. If you have worked with the Center in your career or have experience in implementing these strategies, provide a brief summary of the program, your role in the effort, and your evaluation of the outcome. If you have your own ideas for practical improvements in developing such efforts, set them out in your response.

Candidate A Answer:

I have not worked with the Center for Policing Equity but I have been using data driven information as part of my crime fighting strategies for a number of years.

In taking over as the police chief of [Redacted],[-] ,one of my first issues was getting control of violent crime within the city. After meeting with city officials, concerned citizens, state & local law enforcement and members of the court system it was we were all onboard to tackle this issue.

In meeting with the DA's Office and State and Federal Law Enforcement comprehensive strategy was formed. It was imperative that we worked closely with citizens and other community groups. It was a difficult task in the beginning due to lack of faith in the police department due to past bad police behavior within the community. However, I was able to get past that distrust being not from that area and being openly honest about what was needed from the community.

One of the things that we did was to identify the constant players and groups involved with the ongoing violence in the community and what factors surrounded that violence. We quickly learned from multiple present and past incident reports that a certain number of individuals were constantly suspects and or accomplices in most violent crimes within the city area. Further information linked those suspects to a particular city run by a resident within the city. Much of the street information came through concerned citizens that wanted to clean up their city. We never asked any of these citizens to appear in court or have them listed on any type of warrant.

Recognizing the dangers of local citizens getting involved with a dangerous violent [-] gang was out of the question in our formula to bring them down. In working with the US Marshalls, they brought in individuals that did [-] interactions with the gang. All actions were recorded through video and/or audio. Another part of this operation was to make sure that shooting suspects bonds were greatly increased [-] to as much 1 million dollars. As the community quickly realized that the suspects could no longer just get out of jail within 24 hours, they were more encouraged to provide needed information.

In [-], the [-] Police Department's Drug Unit completed the multi-agency Drug/Violent criminal enterprise investigation. The event targeted drug operations and the suspects involved in violent crimes within the community. The criminal round up involved over 120 federal, state and local law enforcement personnel. The operation resulted in numerous arrests for state and federal charges. The operation was one of the largest of its kind in [-]. For the years of [-] and [-], [-] had a 31% drop in overall crime. Most of the information used to identify many of the suspects was gleaned from criminal incident reports and concerned citizens. 

Without community involvement and the trust of the citizens there could be no successful operation. The operation not only helped rid the community of bad violent actors but it also acted as a vehicle for the police department to regain the confidence of the community. Because prior to my arrival the police department was in a freefall and hated by the community for past and recent abuses.

Note: A similar operation was successfully completed in [-]. 


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