Building Trust and Communication Between Police, Public

It’s not uncommon for police to ask for the public’s help in gathering information about serious crimes.

Whether it's a robbery, an assault or a shooting, police say the number one thing that can help the most, having enough and good witness information.

Police are hosting a summit Saturday with the goal to help build community relationships and trust, with the idea to help foster communication between the two.

People in North Omaha neighborhoods said that trust needs to go both ways.

It's an unfortunate but all too familiar scene that played out in North Omaha Friday nigh near 30th and Curtis Avenue, police are heavily armed with assault rifles and K9s are sniffing out a trail.

Tonight, they are looking for a suspect.

But despite the man power, guns and radios -- police still rely on their best asset in this situation -- talking with witnesses. Police interviewed a woman near-by; they believe she may have known crucial information that could help investigators.

Lamar Jones said it should be a familiar scene. "I would talk to them …if I knew something was going on, I would give them some info, some information,” Jones said.

It's not uncommon for family to know the most information Jones said. But it puts the holder of that information in a tough situation. "I'd be scared for my cousin, or my brother or who ever it is but, I don't know, I don't think I could tell on him,” Jones said. "I'd give (them) some hints, but I wouldn't tell you who it is."

Jones says the biggest issue is developing a level of trust between the public and the officers that are sworn to protect them. "I would want them to be honest with me, and tell me why they are talking to me about it, tell me how I could help,” Jones said.

Saturday morning, the community is invited to be part of “the solution” at Omaha North High School.

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