JANUARY 11, 2018

As police chief, I want to update you on some changes underway at the Columbus Police Department. We are making these changes with the goals to make the department more efficient, effective and responsive to the citizens of Columbus.

Some of the changes are procedure changes to our everyday work. Other changes are the reassignment of some personnel to fill the needs of the department.

Per city policy, I am not allowed to discuss personnel matters of individual employees, but I do want to explain some of the plans of the Columbus Police Department and the professional women and men that work in this department.

We are not abandoning any of the Neighborhood Watch and National Night Out programs. We know they are successful and they are vital to our Community Policing effort. In fact, we will be working to expand these programs.

I have personally been involved in these neighborhood programs at the Columbus Police Department for over 20 years. In fact, in three of those years, we finished with three Top 10 awards nationally for our work.

We are working to implement Community Policing model in every part of this department, and changes are being made to move us to this successful and proven model.

At this time I ask our community for trust and patience. Trust me that we are working to make every part of the department better and more responsive to our citizens. We are here to provide a service, and our citizens are our customers. I ask for patience as we make the needed changes while continuing our work in the community.

Allow me time to get these plans implemented in the various moving parts of our department before making a judgment on our results.

I met with all our officers last week and this weekend; we will be publishing on social media for all to see and read what I said to our officers. The statement will be released on our social media pages and distributed to the press.

Community policing involves all of our community. We will continue to hold ourselves accountable to those we serve; we just need trust and patience from Columbus at this time.

I appreciate your dedication to our community and the Columbus Police Department.

Chief Fred Shelton