Correspondence from Local Community Member

Police Commissioner Ed Davis recently received the following email from a local resident:

Commissioner Davis:

I’d like to let you know about a recent success in coordination between the Captains of E-13 and B-2 that has had an immediate impact on our quality of life here in the Parkside area of Jamaica Plain.

My wife and I have lived across the street from Franklin Park in Jamaica Plain for almost 11 years. During that time we have come to believe that many of the wrong elements have concluded that Franklin Park is a great place to do their business because it is seldom patrolled. Over the years people have test fired weapons, sexually assaulted women, intimidated dog walkers, dealt drugs and patronized prostitutes….all within earshot of our bedroom window. We’ve asked for help in the form of a police presence many times before. Two things seemed to block attempts to address the issues. First, the events are sporadic and the area is large. It is just not possible, or desirable, to have a police presence in every part of the park all the time. Second, for years everyone we talked to said it was someone else’s responsibility.

About a month ago we had CPT Greland over to our house for a “meet and greet” cup of coffee with ourselves and a few neighbors. We raised our concern about the lack of police patrols in the park. CPT Greland said he would look into who was responsible for patrolling and help us find a resolution. I must admit that I then assumed that we would never hear back about the issue. I’m happy to tell you that I was wrong. Within 48 hours CPT Greland spoke with the CPT Russell at B-2 and CPT Russell assigned SGT James Buckley to help us address our concerns. SGT Buckley called us shortly thereafter.

A couple of weeks later, SGT Buckley took the time to walk with me to the areas of the park along Walnut and Sigourney where we have historically had issues. I took that same walk this morning with SGT Buckley and Patrolman Cloherty, who has been assigned responsibly for the area. Between our two meetings SGT Buckley has started walking the park and meeting my neighbors. They plan to have foot patrols a couple of times a week.

My neighbors and I are convinced that a couple of foot patrols a week will be a high leverage proposition. We think those patrols will have an outsized impact on our safety and quality of life. Also, SGT Buckley and Patrolman Cloherty seemed to immediately appreciate what we need and that the right touch in patrolling will bring great value.

There will be less happening in the park over the next few months because of the weather. We hope that officers will become habituated to this routine and expect that the real benefit will come in the spring.

I wanted to bring all of this to your attention because I think it is a shining example of excellent responsiveness and high impact coordination by officers who take ownership of issues.

This is big city policing at its best. We feel well served.