Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Prosecutor, Director Riley hit bulls-eye with police-community meeting

Plainfield police will be equipped with body cams
similar to the one above.

Acting Union County Prosecutor Grace Park and Plainfield Director of Public Safety Carl Riley hit the bulls-eye with a community presentation on the new police body cams and use-of-force procedures Wednesday evening at the Plainfield Public Library.

In her opening remarks, Park said that about a year ago, she and her staff began to think hard about what had happened to the trust the public once had in its public safety agencies. That trust, of course, has been put under the microscope by several highly publicized police-involved shootings across the country in that timeframe.

Park, I think, has put her finger on the nub of the problem, and last night's presentation showed that her office and the City of Plainfield understand the issue and are dedicated to making sure that the bond of trust between the community and its law enforcement agencies -- inclduing the police and the prosecutor's office -- is strong and well-maintained.

Park, Riley and her staff spoke to about a hundred community leaders and residents who filled the room and took questions from the audience on both the body cam program and the use-of-force guidelines and procedures.

David Rutherford taped the meeting, which can be seen at his blog today here; and Bernice Paglia has written a full report here.

Plainfield owes a debt of gratitude to Mayor Mapp, Prosecutor Park and Director Riley for addressing the issue of strengthening the ties between the community and its police so forthrightly, so clearly and so effectively.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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