To the Battle Creek Police team, and the Battle Creek and Bedford Township communities:
I feel honored and humbled to serve as your interim chief of police. I am blessed to have this opportunity and I am excited to serve in a new role. The Battle Creek Police Department is an outstanding organization. The people who work for the department are second to none and the BCPD is in an exceptional position. This is a direct result of the vision, dedication, and leadership of Chief Jim Blocker. I look forward to continuing the momentum generated by Chief Blocker’s efforts.
The foundation of a police department is its relationship with the community it serves. The BCPD will continue to work with the community and our staff to grow and strengthen this bond. We will work together to further build an organization that is transparent, responsive, accountable, innovative and energetic in the delivery of public safety services in Battle Creek and Bedford Township.
The BCPD will be smart in its operations, judicious in how it allocates resources, accountable and transparent. To fulfill our mission, the department’s staff and the people who live in our coverage area will have a voice in the strategic planning process and the operations of the department. This process will be inclusive and reflect the diversity of our community and the talent of our officers.
The future holds much promise. Moving forward, we must understand what works organizationally, how it works and where it works. The answer to these questions will provide the framework of our operations. To succeed we must design our programs for flexibility, use innovative ideas, identify outdated approaches, take risks, and continually evaluate our processes. We must use real-time, accurate and actionable data as the platform for our decision-making and actions. This information will be available to the community via a new “Outward Facing Neighborhood Dashboard”. This data will provide neighborhoods with details of where and when crime is occurring, making them aware and keeping them informed.
The primary responsibility of the Battle Creek Police Department is public safety achieved by reducing crime, fear and disorder. Integral to that responsibility is a department that conducts its activities lawfully and constitutionally while ensuring everyone is treated with dignity and respect. We will be a police department that protects individual rights and freedoms, as well as values the contributions made by every member of the organization and community members. Our mission will be built on integrity, accountability, transparency and respect.
As the department serves the community you can expect excellence from our sworn and civilian members. Paramount to achieving our mission to provide the very best possible service is recruiting, hiring and retaining a diverse and professional workforce. Training and education must be an integral part of our development as an organization. We will modernize equipment and technology to support our staff as we implement public safety strategies. Our leadership team will work diligently to ensure staff is accountable to each other and the community we serve.
Three principles will guide our efforts and serve as the cornerstones for developing programs, pursuing opportunities and delivering enhanced services to Battle Creek and Bedford Township.
To have more effective community collaboration, the BCPD’S priority will be building and maintaining relationships with our neighbors and business owners who live and work in Battle Creek and Bedford Township. We will be intentional and inclusive with neighborhood outreach and engagement. We will work alongside community members to solve problems and celebrate success. The Battle Creek Police Department will be accessible, inclusive, transparent and effective in its communication and practices.
We will reduce crime and improve public safety with lawful practices that respect all who live here, as well as visitors, and ensure the safety of our officers.
We will build trust between the community and the BCPD, and we will do so in a constitutional, consistent and compassionate manner.
Public safety is the responsibility of the entire community. Neighbors, parents, youth, business owners, educators, and community leaders all play a role in keeping the community safe. The BCPD will work diligently to create and sustain the kind of partnerships necessary to improve the quality of life in our neighborhoods.
We will collaborate with our partners in the social service and public health communities to address the challenges posed by mental health, developmental disabilities, domestic violence, drug, and alcohol dependency. We will increase our ability to respond to individuals in crisis by growing the number of officers trained in behavioral emergency response. Additionally, BCPD recently was awarded a grant related to these situations. We are currently working with our partners in developing a Community Crisis Response Team. This team will be located in our Fusion Center and work closely with our partners throughout the county to provide individuals with the appropriate resources for better outcomes.
We will also work with existing partners and create new partnerships to develop and implement programs focused on preventing youth violence and their involvement in the criminal justice system.
Data, information, intelligence and evidence-based practices will guide our strategies and tactics. We will track, report and respond to crime using a management model that looks at crime daily and uses multi-agency strategies to direct our resources and address the persons, activities and places that are disrupting the quality of life in our neighborhoods.
The department’s crime prevention and reduction strategies will be based on:
- Accurate and timely information
- Community collaboration and problem solving
- Rapid deployment of resources
- Effective and procedurally just tactics
- Relentless follow-up and assessment
We must continuously review and refine our policies, procedures, and operations to increase efficiency and effectiveness. We will look for opportunities to reduce bureaucracy and operating costs. We will ensure that the right people with the appropriate training are in the right positions to successfully execute and assess the implementation of our action plan. We will develop our future leaders by exposing them to public safety best practices.
We will adopt and promote a mindset of never being satisfied with “good enough”. We will invite our employees to challenge assumptions based on past experiences and scrutinize “the way we’ve always done things”. By committing to creativity and innovation, we will challenge our most basic assumptions – test, tweak and redesign our core activities. We will create a culture of performance and service.
The future holds tremendous opportunities, but there will be challenges. However, the members of the Battle Creek Police Department, working in partnership with the community, will meet these moments head-on. The BCPD will deliver the level of service our neighbors, business, and visitors deserve.
Battle Creek Police Department