Extra Gang Unit Training

Next week, more Omaha police officers will be on the street with the central focus on gang violence. This week -- they're spending four days training and invited our cameras along.

"Police. Get on the ground," said a team as it entered a room at the Police and Fire Training facility northwest of town.

Before -- officers say -- there were gaps in the Omaha Police gang unit.

With the addition of new officers -- they can now cover all three shifts -- 7-days a week.

"We can't do our job without the community," said Captain Rich Gonzalez who adds that training is about more than just entering a building safely. It's about building trust too.

It's why some of these officers will coach soccer and baseball in their off-hours.

"We're just trying to get out in the community a little more -- get a better response with the community," said Gonzalez.

It's four days of training. Yesterday it was classroom work -- understanding ethics -- writing search warrants and how to better reach out to the community.

On this night, they're outside training.

There's no question the firing of four officers and -- this week -- criminal charges filed against two of them for what happened inside a north Omaha home in March -- has shaken the bond between those in blue and the public.

The police chief has said he'll work hard to regain that trust. Whether it's changing how they do things -- or to be better at communicating why they do what they do, this gang unit training seems to cover both aspects.

"This type of tactical training makes them safer and it makes the folks in the neighborhood safer as well," said Gonzalez.

In response to the Seward Street incident, next week all Omaha Police sergeants will have 8 hours of leadership and ethics training.

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