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NYPD Neighborhood Policing Program Aims To Connect Cops With Communities

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The NYPD is stepping up its patrols at key locations across the city following Monday night's deadly blast at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.

In an interview with WCBS 880's Rich Lamb about the NYPD's new neighborhood policing initiative, Chief of Patrol Terence Monahan was asked how community policing could help identify possible terror suspects. 

Lamb: "You're hoping to get more information, more data, more G2 from the neighborhood, right? Do you think that this policing technique could pick up on somebody who's buying some materials in a hardware store, or -- are those the kind of contacts that would be helpful?"

Monahan: "Absolutely. You get to know people on a regular basis. That store owner is going to say -- if he sees something suspicious, he may not want to call 911. But he may say (to) Rodney the cop he sees every day, 'Hey listen, I saw something a little suspicious, maybe you should look into it.' And we can start the ball rolling."

"This is all about getting to know people. You know, there's 8.5 million eyes out there in the city of New York, and we want to be able to reach out to as many of them, and get them comfortable to come up to us and kind of talk," he continued. "Someone's going to see something, and if they say something to us, hopefully we can prevent a tragedy like what happened in England."

Monahan was joined by Deputy Chief Rodney Harrison as they discussed the department's new neighborhood policing initiative, which is being rolled out in precincts across the five boroughs. The program is aimed at connecting police officers with the communities they serve by working together with residents to solve problems that arise.

Harrison said at the heart of the program is a push to have beat cops lead community meetings. As a result, NYPD officers in the program are being trained on public speaking.

The initiative represents a change in the way the NYPD has viewed community policing and gives more presence and responsibilities to the men and women on the beat.

For more on the NYPD neighborhood policing program, click here. The website also lets you look up your neighborhood to see when and where there will be a community meeting.

The program is in place in more than 40 of the city's 77 precincts.

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