Activists Say Mayor’s Actions Are an “Insult”
Shreveport has a website up and going where you can track police reform efforts.
Mayor Adrian Perkins says you can visit WeHearYouShreveport.com to learn more about recent changes to policing in Shreveport and to read SPD's amended use of force policy in its entirety.
But the organizers of We the People of Shreveport say
Without prior contact, our name was affiliated as one of the groups they say they’re listening to. However, We, The People want to make it clear that we were not consulted and quite frankly, think the website is an insult to the community’s genuine wish to change for the better.
The group is urging the Mayor and Police Chief Ben Raymond to take more aggressive steps to "protect and serve all citizens".
There is a push to equip all officers with body cameras. KEEL News recently asked several questions about the cameras we already have and how they are being used.
Here are our questions with the answers we just received:
How many body cams does SPD have? Currently, 80 working cameras.
How many are currently being used? 69
I understand we got several with a federal grant. We were given 90 body cameras in 2016 from L3 when we purchased 90 Mobile Vehicle Recording systems with an equipment finance package for marked units. We did not directly pay for any of the cameras.
What can you tell me about the body cams that Wayne Smith had under his supervision? The body cameras were given to units who do not routinely work out of a patrol unit or those specialized units who spend a great deal of time in engaging citizens. The units include K-9, Field Support (Traffic), downtown patrol, Community Liaison Officers, School Resource Officers and our Warrants Unit.
When did we take delivery on any body cams? 2016
Do we have a Policy and procedure manual on body cams? Yes (see attached)
What training is done on body cams? Per policy (see attached)
The Shreveport website says
Body cameras have been an unfunded need of the Shreveport Police Department for years. Currently, we only have enough body cameras to outfit a small fraction of our officers. This initiative will identify the funding needed to provide every officer with a body camera. We are currently working to identify federal funds, grant money, and private donors who are willing to aid the City of Shreveport with this purchase.
Mayor Perkins adds: "We have more to do to accomplish the reforms we all want to see, but we are listening and we are moving in the right direction."
But We the People respond
We, the People want to make it known that the Shreveport Police Department is NOT listening to the needs of the community.
They plan to hold another rally tomorrow from 10-noon at the police station calling for the Chief to fire Sgt. Brent Mason.