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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 182959 Find in a Library
Title: Community Policing: Building Community Trust Thinking Outside of the Box
Journal: Police Chief  Volume:67  Issue:3  Dated:March 2000  Pages:50-55
Author(s): Pete Mittleman
Editor(s): Charles E. Higginbotham
Date Published: 2000
Page Count: 6
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: As discovered by the Jacksonville, Florida, Police Department (JPD), community policing must have the support of the entire community, not just community leaders, and must involve a grass roots effort that allows the police to build new bridges of trust with everyone in the community.
Abstract: In early 1995, the JPD identified a significant amount of distrust between the police department and the city's black community. Community policing was viewed as a means of drawing the entire community, and especially black residents, closer to the police department. An administrative decision was made from the outset to ensure that the JPD's community policing efforts would be successful both short-term and long-term. One of the top priorities was to put more police officers on the street. Civilians replaced many sworn police officers to perform clerical tasks, while police officers were reassigned to the streets. The city was divided into six geographic zones, and zone officers were moved into the field. This made zone commanders more accessible to citizens, and zone substations served as meeting places for community gatherings. The JPD also flattened its hierarchy to shift power, authority, and responsibility to line personnel. This was accomplished through empowerment, training, new shifts, and the assignment of names on police cars. The JPD received a grant to recruit 85 police officers to form a Community Policing Unit. The goal of this unit was to station community policing officers in a few areas with high violent crime rates. A problem-oriented policing office was created to support police officers by providing information police officers could use to solve neighborhood problems. Accountability and decentralization were the cornerstones of the community policing approach adopted by the JPD. 4 photographs
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Accountability; Black/African Americans; Community policing; Florida; Municipal police; Police community relations; Police crime-prevention; Police effectiveness; Police organizational structure; Police-minority relations; Problem-Oriented Policing; Public Opinion of the Police; Violence prevention
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