About 40 people discussed ways to foster better rapport between the public and police at a Thursday night program in Madison co-sponsored by the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, NOBLE (National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives) Northern New Jersey Chapter, the Morris County Chiefs of Police Association, the Madison Borough Police Department and the First Baptist Church of Madison, which hosted the forum.
Entitled “The Law & Your Community,” the presentation concentrated on “proper procedures when interacting with law enforcement,” New Jersey law and police internal affairs reporting procedures. Topics explored included how to ensure safe and positive interaction with police during a motor vehicle stop. Attendees also learned procedures for internal affairs reporting.
The two-hour program included a discussion on ways police are trained to communicate with the public in different situations and the need for mutual respect between the community and police. Also stressed was the need for police officers to understand the community they serve and the residents who live there. Attendees also learned that law enforcement can be a dangerous job at times and that officers must always perform their duties with an “officer safety first” mentality.
As such, chief presenter, Detective Kim Nelson-Edward of the Montclair Police Department explained that the officer’s approach in some instances may be perceived as defensive when in fact it is not; the bladed stance is merely used for officer safety.
The program was moderated by the Rev. Craig Dunn, church pastor.
Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp attended, as did First Assistant Prosecutor Thomas Zelante, Chief of Investigations John Spiers, Deputy Chief Stephen E. Wilson Jr, Captain Steve Murzenski, Sergeant Keisha Higgs, Detective Aaron King, Supervising Assistant Prosecutor LaJuan Tucker and Assistant Prosecutor Julian Hill.
Besides Det. Nelson-Edward, other individuals from NOBLE who attended were Lieutenant Tyrone Williams of the Montclair Police Department and Jiles Ship, the president of the northern New Jersey Chapter of NOBLE. President Ship introduced the program and provided introductory remarks.
Also attending were Lieutenant Joseph Longo and Sergeant Sean Plumstead from the Madsion Police Department, Officer Juan Rodriguez from the Morris Township Police Department and Sergeant Peter Rolph of the Morris Plains Police Department. .
For inquiries about this release, contact Public Information Officer Fred Snowflack at (973) 829-8159, or [email protected]