Commissioner Davis Speaks At Crime Reduction Conference

Chiefs Ed Davis, Dean Esserman and criminologist George Kelling
will headline conference for region’s major city police chiefs

BRISTOL, R.I., May 21, 2007 – With violent crime escalating and police departments competing for a shrinking pool of federal funding, police across New England are being forced to develop innovative tactics to protect their cities.
On May 21 and 22, the Justice System Training and Research Institute at Roger Williams University will join forces with the Boston and Providence police departments to host police chiefs from major cities in New England at a conference on how police can employ progressive techniques to battle crime in the post-Sept. 11 era.
“It is appropriate that the New England police chiefs have chosen to gather at Roger Williams,” said University President Roy J. Nirschel. “Our Justice Institute has a solid track record of conducting research and developing training for police departments, doing its part to making New England safer.”
Providence Police Chief Dean Esserman agreed: “We are excited to be one of the primary sponsors of this important conference. This event is an invaluable opportunity to discuss contemporary crime issues with noted criminologist George Kelling. This conference was brought about due to the partnerships between Roger Williams University, the Boston Police Department, the New England Major Cities Chiefs Seminar and the Providence Police Department.”
The conference—to be held at the University’s Bristol, R.I., campus—will highlight Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis, Providence Chief Esserman and renowned criminologist George Kelling. The event comprises a variety of panels and presentations across two days, opening with a welcome from Chief Esserman and President Nirschel on May 21 at noon. A detailed agenda is attached.
Commissioner Davis and Chief Esserman have been tasked with combating violent crime in their respective cities. Each brought with him a successful track record of turning around police departments and using community-based policing to reduce crime.
Dr. Kelling, the conference’s keynote speaker, co-authored the seminal “Broken Windows” policing theory, which asserts that addressing a neighborhood’s small problems (such as vandalism) immediately deters further petty and violent crime. During the 1980s and 90s, he served as a consultant to the New York City Police Department and helped guide the city’s policies during a period of radical crime reductions.
Additional conference topics include how police departments can combat discriminatory policing and racial profiling and create workforces that are representative of the communities they serve. Immigration, too, will be discussed—particularly the challenge of earning the trust of undocumented immigrants to ensure they feel safe requesting police services and comfortable providing information to help solve crimes.
Among others, police from the following cities will participate:
· Boston, Springfield, Worcester, Lowell and New Bedford, Mass.
· Bridgeport, New Haven, Hartford and Stamford, Conn.
· Providence, R.I., and the Rhode Island State Police
Members of the media are encouraged to attend the conference—R.S.V.P. to Brian E. Clark in the Roger Williams University Office of Public Affairs at (401) 254-3407. Mr. Clark can provide a complete list of attendees and will work to coordinate interviews and photo shoots with the police representatives attending the conference.
Roger Williams University established the Justice System Training and Research Institute at the University’s School of Justice Studies to provide training and professional development for all areas of law enforcement. The University is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as 10th among comprehensive colleges in the north. Roger Williams offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the arts and sciences, architecture, business, construction management, education, engineering, historic preservation, justice studies, legal studies, visual arts studies and law.

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