Wichita police release findings of organizational assessment

Wichita Police Department (KSN File Photo)

WICHITA, Kansas – The report is in that contains several recommendations from scholars and the community to make major changes to the Wichita Police Department.

The city ordered the report in August, after a leadership change at WPD and protests from the community over officer-involved shootings.

The details of the assessment are captured in a 227-page report and highlights are featured in an 11-page executive summary.

It is full of recommendations by Wichita State University’s Hugo Wall School of Public Affairs and faculty from WSU’s department of criminal justice.

Both documents can be read at www.wichita.gov or the following direct links:

Some of those recommendations include improving racial profiling, transparency about the use of force by developing standard procedures after an incident happens to inform the public and continuing to implement body cameras.

“Now, it’s up to us to go ahead and drill down deeper into the recommendations and then put together an implementation plan and that’s what we’re going to be doing. spend the next 3 months the next quarter outlining all of the recommendations, and then starting to look at time tables for implementation,” said Wichita City Manager Robert Layton.

WSU also recommended establishing a new community advisory board for the purpose to work with police and improve relations with the department.

A committee from the advisory board would serve as the city manager review board that would review cases on police conduct and issue reported by citizens.

But, it’s up to the district attorney if a criminal investigation would happen.

Details of the briefing

Click here to read the full executive summary.
Click here to read the full executive summary.

The goals of the assessment were to:

  1. Provide research for best practices
  2. Engage internal and external stakeholders on strengths, concerns and the future direction for the department
  3. Review policies, proceedures and other aspects of the department
  4. Provide recommendations for hiring the next police chief.

The assessment focused on these areas:

  • Improving community relations and strengthening community policing
  • Continuing plans to obtain body cameras for field officers
  • Addressing racial profiling and Implementing cultural diversity and sensitivity training
  • Educating the community on the legalities of pretext, or patrol, stops
  • Developing targeted recruitment and retention efforts to improve departmental diversity
  • Establishing a new community advisory board
  • Improving access to information and transparency, among other recommendations

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