Need comments, please

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by hearts and roses, Sep 26, 2009.

  1. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Today there was a letter in my mail, handwritten and addressed to me without my full address or even postage stamp. I believe it was dropped off by hand. It was from the detective who handled difficult child's sexual assault [and kidnapping] 4 years ago (can't believe it's been 4 years!).

    The letter was really a notice regarding an upcoming town meeting where the main discussions will be about "your visions for the Department to assist in establishing of goals for the Police Dept and to consider in the selection of a new Police Chief". There was a list of several key points of discussion, some of which include Community Policing, School Resource Officers, Patrol Levels, Drug Enforcement, Juvenile/Education Enforcement, Regional Policing and others. It appears that it may have been handed out at the last town meeting as a general invite for anyone who wanted to 'attend and share their ideas and visions'.

    At the bottom of the page there was a handwritten note to me from the detective involved in our past case with a request to attend this forum. In part, it read, "I think you may be able to provide some insight and input at this forum. It would be great if you could attend!" signed, the detective.

    I must be really dense because I really do not see what I would have to contribute to this forum or how it relates to our experience. In fact, when I read about police or school district programs being implemented, I am usually in opposition of the plans. I am going to contact the detective to see what he had in mind and how I might be able to add valuable input at this meeting without divulging our experiences.

    Does anyone see something that I'm missing? I mean, why go out of his way to invite me? Thanks for any input YOU may have!!
  2. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    This is a bit weird. It is actually illegal for anyone other than an employee of the postal service to put anything into a mailbox.

    This sounds like something where they are planning on trying to set up some sort of community policing program which is not at all a bad thing.
  3. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    ".... to assist in establishing of goals for the Police Department....."

    Four years ago you had an instense involvement with the police department. Within that experience, where you 100% satisfied with the procedures the police followed in your difficult child's case? Where there any timelines that could have been tightened? Was there anything left undone (or took longer than you thought it should)?

    This is your chance to provide input in how the police handled your difficult child's case (you can do this without bringing up the specific case) and offer some ideas. Maybe emphasizing the importance of acting very quickly on these cases. Can you think of how if things were done differently it may have been easier for difficult child to live through and bring justice quicker?
  4. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'm wondering if your Chief of Police is an elected official. If so, this sounds more like a political rally and they think your story could help which ever side they are advocating for.

    I think it's a good idea to talk to the detective and get a better feel for things- especially, what is he expecting you to say? Does he want you to relay horrid details or advocate for something in particular?

    If you do this, it might be a good opportunity to advocate for policemen to get some training on dealing with calls where a person has MI. Our local NAMI group gave a class to our policemen. I guess it made a difference- they floored difficult child with tasers instead of "real" guns. Is that an improvement??
  5. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Thanks - this feedback is just what I needed. Andy, your questions really helped me in figuring out what I could possibly have to offer. You're correct - I could have important input to share on how our case was handled or how it could have been handled differently. Just thinking out loud now...

    I found our team of officers to be very helpful, understanding but still diligent in rooting out the facts of the case which we knew and those which we did not. They aligned themselves with us and really made our input feel of value by allowing us to help in parts of the earliest investigations. Communication was great and there was a sufficient amount of hand holding to help us stay strong in those early days and weeks immediately following. I suppose those are good things to share without divulging too much.

    The only negative I would share is that the one woman on the case, who assisted in obtaining difficult child's second statement was a bit harsh with difficult child and me. Our entire dealings with her left us both feeling like criminals ourselves and she wouldn't share any information with me, even though she knew I was going to get a copy of everything, even difficult child's statement so I don't know what her problem was. Maybe it's just her way, but I found her to be a bit of a B_________H. hahaha.

    And food for thought: I think more programs should be implemented to involve local police officers with students at the Jr High levels to establish a more open environment and rapport. Our town does the DARE program in 5th grade and that is where it stops. After that, the only contact our students have with the local police is if they get into trouble or some jerk on the board decides that we need drug sniffing dogs going through our kids' personal belongings! Don't get me wrong - if there is a reason to believe a kid is dealing, etc., by all means, search his locker. But we're a town of under 10,000 total and our graduating class is hardly 135 every year. We don't need metal detectors at the doors, random drug sniffing dogs roaming the building or breathalyzers at the school dances! Yeesh!

    So, can I say all that?? They may regret inviting me!
  6. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    I'd double check with the detective to see what input he is thinking you can put into this meeting. As his thoughts and yours may have little (or alot) to do with each other.

    Personally, I think our kids our being policed as a whole.....too darn much. And the DARE program.....well, honestly I don't think it works, but it makes parents feel like they're doing something pro-active. I think if cops would just get out of the cars more and walk around the neighborhoods and get to know would make for better community/police partnership all the way around.

    Our cops drive around on Beggars nite with bags of candy in their patrol cars. They park on various corners in all the neighborhoods and pass out safe candy to the kids. Kids LOVE it, and the cops get a big kick out of it too. We have no issues on beggars nite. lol

    There are 2 cops I trust in this town. And one of them ain't the cheif. lol

    I'd say the dectective has a good idea of what's going to happen in this meeting. (maybe insider info) He obviously thinks you have something important to contribute. A call to him would be a good idea before you decide one way or the other.

  7. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I think he wants someone involved who isn't in lockstep with the rest of them. If you feel up to it, it might be a good thing for you to do. But, you should probably be aware that you will be the odd man out.

    It seems to me he could have handled this better by talking to you personally about his thoughts of your possible involvement.
  8. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Do they have a Cyber Department yet? Perhaps that is going to be put on the table and he wants actual cases there to argue for the need.
  9. Abbey

    Abbey Spork Queen

    Jo, sometimes people step out of their limit of what they are legally supposed to do for the greater cause. The detective many know he shouldn't be contacting you, but feel you have something to offer in the long run. I think I'd go for it. All you have to do is show up. You don't have to say anything unless you think it's appropriate.

  10. Suz

    Suz (the future) MRS. GERE

    I see this as a huge compliment. If he didn't feel that you were articulate and could be helpful he wouldn't have bothered. He might have a hidden agenda behind this but that's not necessarily a bad thing provided you have the same agenda. This might also be an opportunity to bring some positive changes in the future out of a horrific event from the past.

    I would definitely call him for more info.

  11. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    I also see it as a likely compliment.

    Perhaps the detective recalled something you said or did that he thought was insightful. Or he thought your experiences with the police or community were powerful and impacting....or some combination of these types of things. You very well might have an opportunity to bring something positive to the table.

    It's not a bad idea at all to give him a quick call to see what he was thinking.
  12. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    I left a message at the department for him - he's off today but hopefully he picks up his messages and will call me back.

    Thank you very much for your comments. Obviously, he has some reason he asked me. Now I just want to find out what it is!