Swansea chief visits White House to discuss modern policing - KMOV.com

Swansea chief visits White House to discuss modern policing

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Swansea Police Chief Steve Johnson. Credit: KMOV Swansea Police Chief Steve Johnson. Credit: KMOV
SWANSEA (KMOV.com) -

The Swansea police chief recently returned from Washington DC where he discussed how to bridge the divide between police and the community.

Swansea Police Chief Steve Johnson was one of 41 police chiefs invited to White House to discuss how to bridge the divide between officers and the communities they live in. The trip coincidentally took place the same week that two African American men were killed by police and several Dallas police officers were shot and killed.

Protests of the shootings have been held across the country.

The hope of the summit is to develop policing that works for the 21st century.

“When you think you’re good at what you’re doing, you get better every day and you should be looking at better ways of doing it,” said Johnson.

Johnson said police departments should be transparent as part of a police data initiative, in which departments publicly post use of force incidents and the number of times officers were in deadly situations.

Johnson added that trust comes when officers get out of their cars.

“An average person that sees a police officer drive through their neighborhood, that doesn’t necessarily help people feel safe. Sometimes it’s the opposite and they think ‘uh oh why are the police here?'” Johnson said. “But if you get officers out of the car and walk around and talk to people, we call non-enforcement times.”

Johnson said officers and citizens should do self-evaluations to ease tensions. The Swansea Police Department has already been recognized for its efforts in bridging the gap between law enforcement and the citizens they serve through proactive efforts.

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