Interview with Sgt. Pat Wyton
Police departments nationwide are dealing with community fallout from the often fatal shootings of unarmed (often black) men. In the college town of Boulder, Colo., the police department has had Boulder residents participate in its Professional Standards Review Panel, a 20-year old program that puts citizens in the room when allegations against officers are handled. Sgt. Pat Wyton told “First Take with Lando and Chavis” about current openings on the panel.
“We want to protect the community from member (police officer) misconduct, and we want to protect the department members from false or malicious allegations,” said Wyton. “If we don’t know what people are thinking, we can’t look at ourselves (to do things better) and make appropriate changes.”
The panel, made up of six people from the law enforcement community, and six citizens not from the law enforcement community, makes recommendations to the Chief of Police on how such cases are disposed. Volunteers are asked to serve for at least a two-year term, and a nine-hour training session is required. ”There is a class that covers legal issues. Arrest control and arrest tactics, handcuffing, what are approved uses of force, those kinds of things are covered.”
Applications are due by: Friday, March 13th. Information is available at the Boulder Police website (www.BoulderColorado.gov/police).
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