Chief Charles (Chuck) Broadway, of the Clermont Police Department, was the guest speaker at the Kiwanis Club of Clermont on January 31, 2017. He began his presentation by talking about his personal background, which included his education, family life and his extensive experience in Law enforcement. He then spoke about the Clermont Police Department which consists of 70 sworn Police Officers, who patrolled 16 square miles while protecting 34,667 residents of Clermont. He informed us that the majority of crimes investigated by his department consist of property crimes and said that the safety of the residents was the number one priority of the Clermont Police Department.
He referred to the recent Uniformed Crime Report – which is a compilation of official data and statistics on crime throughout the United States that is published by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). This official report shows a significant decrease in crime in Clermont for the first six-months of 2016 and shows an even higher trend for the second six months. Chief Broadway attributed this reduction in crime to the following factors: strong relationships with the community — The community has subscribed to the “if you see something say something” policy where they report suspicious activity to the police; intelligence led policing which consist of data tracking and criminal analysis to name few. Add to that, overt and covert intelligence gathering and analyzing and the sharing of information. All of these facilitate the development of innovative plans of action to eliminate the problems. Other factors are: relationships with other agencies such the strong relationships with the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and other municipalities.
The Chief mentioned other factors such as community policing of which he said he has made a strong commitment to educating the community on crime prevention and crime awareness that has been instrumental in not only reducing crime but also in reducing the fear of crime for those who live, work and visit the city of Clermont. He spoke of the high visibility and good police work of his department; the early engagement with the youth of Clermont which includes the Explorer Program, crime prevention and sports activities and finally, adequate police staffing to effectively cover calls for service.
Chief Broadway also spoke about the creation of a Mobile Crisis Unit in which members of his department, in a “partnership” with Lifestream Behavior Center, are being trained to respond to incidents involving mentally ill persons to diffuse the situation and divert them to an appropriate clinical setting in lieu of a jail. “The department is involved in a two-year pilot program in which a licensed clinician can attempt to divert offenders from jail to a more appropriate medical or mental-health solution. The clinician, who will be on-call, will come out to the scene after officers’ have determined it is safe.” Please note that the program has not yet been fully implemented at this time.
At the conclusion of his presentation, President Janet Hoskinson presented Chief Broadway with a commemorative Club Pin.