Allentown police chief hopes outreach efforts will impact gun violence

Written by on October 18, 2021

Allentown police chief hopes outreach efforts will impact gun violence

By Hayden Mitman

October 18, 2021

Photo by kat wilcox from Pexels

Last week was particularly violent in Allentown with three separate shootings including one that was fatal.

 

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Allentown Police Chief Charles Roca, appointed just last month, said investigations are underway. In fact, an arrest has been made in the fatal shooting and it’s not time for knee-jerk reactions. 

“When incidents like this happen, That kind of puts the community kind of in a state of, oh my gosh, what’s happening. And rightfully so. It’s important that we, as a police department, as a community, work together,” he said. 

Roca wouldn’t comment on the ongoing investigations, but he said that through outreach and building trust, neighbors could see police as partners in preventing crime. 

“When you communicate, that’s when you effect change. Everybody deserves to be treated with respect and we’ve got to do it together,” he said. “That’s what it’s about. Unity over division.”  

He also noted that it can be a slow process, but he’s in it for the long haul.

“There is no quick fix. There’s no one pill you can swallow and say ‘you’re all better now.’ It’s an ongoing process,” he said.

Roca pointed to outreach services like the police department’s new crisis intervention pilot program as ongoing efforts to cut crime.

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