You can enroll in the Citizens Police Academy and for one day a week for 15 weeks learn all about the department, visit and shoot at the gun range, mingle with police dogs and even allow them to “attack” you if you are so inclined. This invitation was included in the information from John Gliatta, Independent Police Reviewer, at the League’s Lunch and Learn last month.
We also learned that state guidelines recommend answering a 911 call within 15 seconds; Fresno is working on this and has funded more 911 operators, a grueling job dealing with mostly upset public.
You can also file a complaint about an officer or a procedure by calling 621-7000, or preferably filing on line or at one of the Fresno City community centers.
By googling AB953, you can learn about RIPA, the Racial Identity and Profiling Act, which requires information be reported to the Department of Justice about police stops. Police departments of Fresno’s size must begin detailed reporting of all officer “stops” this month, which will then be available on the state’s RIPA website. In response to questions about officer involved shootings, Gliatta, who was a SWAT team instructor, explained that officers cannot shoot to only maim someone wielding a gun or other lethal weapon because of the difficulty in hitting a moving target, thus putting the officer and perhaps civilians at high risk for fatality. He makes a quarterly report on this and other police actions; they can be found on the City of Fresno website: https://www.fresno.gov/news/office-of-independent-review-quarterly-report-now-available/ by Francine Farber