Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Looking back on my first year as Chief of Police

I was sworn in as chief of the Kansas City Missouri Police Department nearly one year ago on Oct. 13, 2011. I would like to offer a heartfelt thanks to family, friends and co-workers for their support during my first year as chief. Without them, my journey would have been much more difficult. I also appreciate the support other segments of the community have shown to me. Understanding symbiotic relationships is a must if we are serious about mending distrust issues in the community. Therefore, my focus has been and will continue to be on developing and nurturing relationships. A day has not gone by in which someone from the community has not commented on the positive direction of the department - whether about the outstanding performance of an employee, the increased use of technology, the recognizable positive engagement of residents or comments in general about improved feelings of safety in the community. Let it be known that I have not done anything alone; I am merely a part of a tremendously dedicated workforce who understands the importance of the role we play in this community. This is a role that has not been taken lightly!

I would be remiss to limit my recognition to current members of the police department and not acknowledge the contribution of former chiefs of police, specifically retired chiefs James Corwin and Rick Easley, for establishing the foundation on which I am able to build. For their personal attention to my professional development, I am extremely grateful. I am a by-product of a team of predecessors who prepared me to carry the baton, and as I progress, I am doing the same for those who will remain a part of the department upon my retirement. (I have no retirement plans in the near future, however).

Hopefully, many of you have followed what has been going on in the community concerning activities of law enforcement in general, so I won’t detail all programs, projects or changes in philosophy. There were more than 230 Priority Actions in the original draft of mystrategic plan. So far, we have addressed more than 80 Priority Actions as we continue to work toward achieving reductions in crime and building trusting and respectful relationships both internally and externally. There is much more work to be done. However, we are headed in the right direction, especially with regard to improving relationships. Here are several links to some of our initiatives:

Community Support Division
- Community Support Division will reach out to those affected by violent crime
- Community Support Division makes inroads in neighborhood
- Six aggravated assault victims pursue prosecution thanks to Community Support Division

• Hot Spot Policing 

• Increased Partnership with Probation and Parole 

• ShotSpotter

I am committed to continuing to serve our City to the best of my ability. It is truly an honor serving such an engaged community and I am excited about what the future holds for our great city. Your support is appreciated!

Send comments to kcpdchiefblog@kcpd.org.