Foward was joined by Montgomery County Sheriff Rob Streck, Vandalia Police Chief Kurt Althouse, Oakwood Police Chief Alan Hill and Kettering Police Chief Christopher Protsman in announcing the local changes. Each said their department is working with the NAACP to improve relationships and policing in the area.
“In my opinion, police transparency, public trust and officer accountability at all levels are the three most critical components as we move forward,” Hill said.
Hill talked about his department’s plan to purchase body cameras and cruiser cameras for its officers. He said the plan is to get them up and operational by early next year.
Streck discussed a new program his office and other agencies are doing to address those with mental health problems. He said his office has two trained professionals that ride with deputies and work at scenes with people who have mental health issues. He said the work is resulting in less arrests — saving taxpayers money and also keeping people he said don’t belong in jail out of jail.
Prostman said his department has made it clear on its policy that officers are not to use chokeholds unless in a deadly force situation and that officer have a duty to intervene if another officer is breaking the law or policy. Meanwhile, Althouse said his department is looking to diversify the way it recruits new officers.
Foward said more changes are coming and he planned to continue to update the community every quarter.