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Vjornaxx t1_iud6z7h wrote

The opinion of the public at large is going to be slow to change and that is largely due to the fact that police don’t interact with as many lawful citizens as we do with citizens with a long history of criminal involvement. The stories that news outlets choose to publish rarely cover the gun, drug, or domestic arrests we make every day - and it is our conduct on those incidents that establishes our reputation with the people we interact with the most.

I cannot speak for all officers, but I know that my conduct on those types of incidents has earned me a reputation of being fair. I know that I work hard to show trainees that earning a reputation on the street for being fair makes everyone’s lives easier. I know that at least at the patrol level, the cultural changes that have taken place within the department have been significant. But cultural shifts take time to fully set in and one of the side benefits of being understaffed is that there is a lot of new blood coming out of the academy who are learning how to police the modern way.

BPD still has a lot of work to do to earn trust from the public at large. But I think that the public simply does not see the things that might sway their opinions. The public does not see the daily interactions we have with our “regulars.” The public does not seem to know or does not seem to care about the training that BPD puts its officers through. The public attributes a large amount or issues with the city to the police, even when the issues are outside of police control.

So yes, there is work to be done. Yes, the public still isn’t 100% on board with BPD. But I know that on my post and in my sector, the public wants us there. The community members feel comfortable enough with me to walk up to me and talk about their issues. It’s only the dealers on the corner who don’t want me around - and they may not like what I do, but they have never accused me of being unfair.


EthanSayfo t1_iudhxyf wrote

Listen, I appreciate your thoughtful response, and acknowledgement that there is still work to be done.

I absolutely respect the police of the city who do the hard work day in and day out, and do it without breaking the law themselves. Please know that 95%+ of the community wants BPD to be the best possible version of itself.