Thursday, March 15, 2012

International Woman of Courage winner visits KCPD

Earlier this week, we were pleased to play host to Major Pricilla de Oliveira Azevedo of the Rio de Janeiro Military Police for a few days. Major Azevedo visited many sites to learn how Kansas City fights crime, including the City’s Emergency Operations Center, Greater Kansas City Crime Commission, our Police Academy, Narcotics and Vice Division and Gang Squads, Police Headquarters and the KCPD Crime Lab. She also got a look at our community policing efforts at the Westside CAN Center and rode along with patrol officers. She is pictured above with Deputy Chief Cheryl Rose.

Major Azevedo came to Kansas City just days after being honored as one of 10 International Women of Courage by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and First Lady Michelle Obama in Washington, D.C. The award is given to women around the globe who have advanced women’s rights in their countries at great personal risk. She came to KCPD to share her experiences with us and exchange ideas about how to make our respective communities safer.

Major Azevedo has done some outstanding work fighting crime and making a better community in Rio. Here’s a brief summary of what she’s accomplished, according to the U.S. State Department:

“Major Azevedo joined the Rio de Janeiro Military police in 1998 and, following her graduation in 2000, started working in police battalions and street repression operations. In 2007, Major Azevedo demonstrated extreme courage and commitment to her duties by successfully arresting a gang of criminals who had kidnapped and tortured her. As a result of her courage and success, she was invited to head the first “Police Pacification Unit” (UPP) in Rio de Janeiro, in the “favela” (slum) of Santa Marta. During her two years there, she has shut down drug dealing operations in the favela, established conflict mediation models, worked with state and local government institutions to improve garbage collection and health care, broadened education and technical training opportunities, and developed a successful community arts and crafts fair.”

We are very proud the State Department chose KCPD as a progressive law enforcement agency for Major Azevedo to come share what she’s done and to learn about how we fight crime.

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