Meeting to discuss S. Mountain precinct nets disappointing attendance

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By Alicia Barron By Alicia Barron

PHOENIX – Community members were disappointed after only six of 45 members of a Phoenix Police precinct task force showed up for a meeting Tuesday.

Almost two dozen community members attended the first meeting that was meant to open a dialogue between members of the Phoenix Police Department’s South Mountain precinct and residents in the community where the main problem is trust and transparency.

The purpose of the meeting was to figure out how to change the perception of that precinct in light of recent reports including one officer charged with murder and dozens of officers under investigation for fraud.

Among the recommendations for the South Mountain precinct discussed at the meeting were to recruit more minority officers, to require police officers to provide business cards with contact information to all people they have contact with and to try and educate officers on cultural differences.

Also recommended were dashboard cameras and to require all officers involved in a shooting to undergo drug and alcohol testing.

The task force will meet with the public once more on November 18 before sending the recommendation to the Phoenix City Council. The council will decide which recommendations to implement on December 14.