The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Cops, courts and fires

July 19, 2013

Chief: Elwood making progress on community policing initiatives

(Continued)

ELWOOD, Ind. —

"Bertram really likes helping youth and he's really gotten involved with it. We want to give them something positive to focus on," Hanna said.

Perhaps the biggest undertaking of the new initiatives is a Citizens Review Panel, conceived as a conduit for citizens to bring formal complaints against the police department without having to deal directly with police officers, but Arnold said he hopes it becomes more than that. The seven-member body is a few weeks from being activated, Arnold said on Thursday.

The panel will be modeled after citizens review panels in other cities. Arnold said it will be similar to Anderson’s three-person Board of Public Safety, which provides the public with advocates in overseeing police, firefighters and other public safety offices.

The current procedure is for the public to go to Elwood Police Department officers with any complaints. Arnold, who has used what other cities have done as a framework, said the panel will take grievances, review cases and bring formal complaints to the mayor and the police chief.

Hanna also expects the panel to streamline operations for police.

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