PALMDALE – You are invited to join officers from the Palmdale Sheriff’s Station for coffee, conversation and camaraderie next month as organizers mark the one-year anniversary of the “Coffee with a Cop” program.
The event will take place from 9 to 10:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 6, at the McDonald’s located at 131 E. Palmdale Blvd. in Palmdale.
“Everyone should consider coming out, whether they agree with the way law enforcement is being done or whether they disagree,” said Deputy Ray Wilson, adding that the event offers an opportunity for officers to accept constructive criticism from residents.
Many in the community have embraced the monthly Coffee with a Cop meetings since the program was launched in February of last year, Wilson said.
“It’s been a real positive turnout, and everyone that’s showed up has utilized it the way we were hoping,” Wilson said. “It’s a forum for people to ask questions that they may not have time to ask us when we’re out there in the field.”
Through Coffee with a Cop, residents have sought and attained help for various quality of life concerns, such as speeding cars in residential neighborhoods and unlawful selling in front yards, Wilson said.
A highlight of the past year was when young adults from Antelope Valley YouthBuild attended the Coffee with a Cop meetings in October and November, Wilson said.
“They asked some very valid questions that a lot of people, ages 17 to 25, have about police and use of force,” Wilson said.
He said officers were able to dispel common myths about use of force by describing certain scenarios and then questioning the young adults on how they would react as peace officers.
“We were able to explain things in that environment; we had the time to break it down in a way that made total sense to them,” Wilson added.
The next Coffee with a Cop meeting on Feb. 6 will feature Palmdale Sheriff’s Station commander Capt. Don Ford, as well as officers from the Hate Crimes division, the Partners Against Crime team, the Community Relations team, and others.
“McDonald’s is still supplying free coffee for anybody who wants to come out and talk with their local law enforcement officers,” Wilson said
Coffee with a Cop is a national initiative supported by The United States Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Similar events are being held across the county, as local police departments strive to make lasting connections with the communities they serve.
For more information on the upcoming Coffee with a Cop meeting, which marks the one-year anniversary of the program’s launch in Palmdale, contact Deputy Ray Wilson at 661-272-2478.
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