The Chief Report - 10/26
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- Charlottesville Police Chief Michael Kochis discussed recent cooperation between officers and community members during an on-air interview on Wednesday.
He talked about some of the different ways officers are trying to get their message out, especially in times of emergency.
“We've been working really hard trying to build up our social media presence. I mean cause that gives us a reach,” said Kochis. "So in January, I think we had 14,000 followers and I think we have 18,000 followers. The case involving strangulation of the UVA student, that picture of the suspect was shared over 2,000 times. So that’s a pretty far reach, so there's a lot of value to it.”
That suspect has since been arrested and is in custody pending a trial.
Additionally, CPD is working on building special teams to respond to residents suffering from a mental health crisis.
Kochis explains that teams of three people, including an officer, a paramedic and a mental health expert, will work together in such cases.
“Hopefully, we get the three of those teams, hopefully, one or two, but they would respond to these calls and the police officer would be able to deal with the acute nature of something as a safety issue but then step back,” said Kochis.
At that point, the mental health counselor could take over, and all three would be present to help defuse a potentially harmful situation.
At this time, there is no word on when such a program might begin.