Danville Police Department community walks having a positive impact

Police department held fourth walk Thursday evening

By Colter Anstaett - Southside Bureau Reporter

DANVILLE, Va. - Danville police continued their effort Thursday to strengthen the relationship between the police department and the community.

Around two dozen officers gathered in the parking lot of Moffett Memorial Baptist Church at 5 p.m. and received a briefing from Danville Police Chief Scott Booth before heading out.

Booth and the officers knocked on doors on the streets surrounding the church, talking to people.

They also took time to talk to people they met as they walked.

Booth started the walks back in February, almost as soon as taking over as chief.

He and officers plan to go on one walk a month in a different part of the city.

The goal is to help officers connect with residents and visa versa so that the residents will, hopefully, be more willing to share information with the police department that could help solve or, ideally, prevent crime.

Booth said he believes the walks are making a positive impact.

"What I'm seeing is people, for one, like to see us. Believe it or not, they actually like to see us in a non-enforcement role, knocking on their door, asking what we can do to help them out," Booth said. "We're getting some really good information."

He said he really likes that officers have embraced the walks.

"This has spread out into our patrol platoons. So every night when officers are working, officers and supervisors are out on the streets, sometimes they're organizing min-walks and going through neighborhoods and talking to people and solving problems," Booth said.

As of Thursday, the next community walk had not been scheduled.

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