Restoring community trust among new police chief’s goals for HPD

Local News

Restore the community’s trust.

That’s just one of the goals new Chief of Police Susan Ballard has set for the department.

Ballard presented her ideas to the Honolulu Police Commission during their biweekly meeting Wednesday.

They include recruiting and retaining quality employees with a priority on filling 200 uniformed vacancies, increasing the capacity of the computer forensic unit, improving organizational efficiency, and reviewing ROPA and termination criteria.

Officers must also maintain relationships with the community.

She repeated what she told the police officers union at an earlier meeting: “I said I’m just asking for two things from you. I said one, please ask the officers to be nice. When they go to the public, even though that person is in crisis, that you have to remember they’re still a person and treat them like you would if they’re your own family member. And two, explain to them, don’t just take a report and walk out the door. Follow up. Explain this is what’s going to happen next, how it’s going to be done, because they’re the ones who are going to make or break the reputation of this department.”

Ballard also discussed plans to add dashboard cameras in police vehicles, but that’s in the future.

The department is currently in the middle of a 30-day pilot program outfitting select officers in the downtown, Chinatown, and Ala Moana areas with body cameras.

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