LMPD officers tasked with building better relationships with pub - WDRB 41 Louisville News

LMPD officers tasked with building better relationships with public

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Roger Collins is not your typical LMPD officer.

He doesn't go on 911 runs, and most days he strolls the park near Beecher Terrace to say hi.

It's called community policing, officers tasked with building better relationships in the public, something considered crucial to bridging the divide that followed the ambush of Dallas and Baton Rouge officers and questionable police killings of African-American men. 

"We reject any notion that this is an either or scenario, one side or another," Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said.

On Thursday, Mayor Fischer announced ten more positions like Collins' in LMPD, part of a larger effort to strip down tension and fear among communities of color and police and bolster trust. 

The city is also implementing mandatory bias training for all of its employees and creating a citizens advisory board to make recommendations on improving officer training.   

"One of the concerns I hear repeatedly is the first interaction between the officer and the citizen and how that sets the tone for the encounter," Mayor Fischer said.

But not all taxpayers agree.

"I feel like that's us getting into an area we don't really have any say in," Shane Jones said. "It would be like me telling you how to do your job."

"I think it's important for the public to have some kind of input so I support what the mayor is doing," Tommy Juanso said.

Back at the park WDRB's Gilbert Corsey asked, "How many times when you show up at a place like this do you see people scatter and run the opposite way?" Collins replied, "At first often."

It's perhaps a sign of the work to come and while it may not be the police job Collins expected --he now says he wouldn't trade it for the world. 

 "I wanted to make change."

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