Like many of our other patrol divisions, the East Patrol Division has been doing surveys to follow up with residents who call police for service, see them at a community meeting or get pulled over. Sergeants contact the people involved to see if they received all the services police could offer them. They’ve even surveyed the people they arrested. Out of 336 surveys that were returned between July and December 2010, 97 percent of people said they were satisfied with police services.
Interestingly, complaints filed against East Patrol officers during 2010 fell by about 35 percent. While we don’t know the exact cause of this drop, I’d like to attribute some of it to the follow-up surveys. They give residents an outlet of feedback to the police department other than us just taking a report. Here’s what some of the residents had to say on their surveys:
• From a stranded motorist: “The officer was great. He stopped and asked me what was wrong and was very nice and respectful to me and my kids.”
• From an East-side crime victim: “The help we received today from the outstanding KCMO officers was invaluable. We need more officers of their caliber. … Too often only the bad stuff about officers is reported and as a concerned citizen, I attest to their ability to ‘serve and protect’!”
• From an assault victim: “The officer was very helpful and compassionate. He took pictures of my injury. He cared.”
• And even from a man who was unhappy he was arrested for a domestic violence assault: “The officer stopped the problem, I guess.”
What the surveys have revealed are comments like this about our officers are not the exception. By and large, citizens believe their police officers are doing a good job, and I would argue that’s because they are. We’re doing everything in our power to serve Kansas City with integrity, accountability, and the rest of our critical values.
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