Project Giving Police New Sense of Mission |TODAY|
Submitted by dan. on 2007-06-16 01:04.
Mediation sessions for ongoing quarrels among neighbors and police-arranged meetings between victims and perpetrators are part of services Gainesville Police want to offer at a new complex proposed by GPD. "We think we're taking community policing to the next level," Police Chief Norman Botsford said recently.
The idea is not heavily used around the country, Botsford said. But it could help busy court schedules by resolving cases involving minor crimes.
In the mediation center, police want parties involved in disputes over matters such as noise and parking to meet voluntarily and work out their differences with trained mediators. Establishing a mediation program, Botsford said, could end some of these disputes before they escalate and save hundreds of hours that patrol officers now spend responding, often repeatedly, to the same people and complaints.
Botsford said the community center also will hold office space for the Black on Black Crime Task Force, room for computer kiosks where residents can view information about police activity and crime in their neighborhoods and house information about how to reduce crime through environmental design such as proper lighting.
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