New Dallas police “community engagement units” double the number of officers at each patrol station who are permanently assigned to tackling persistent neighborhood crime problems, says the Dallas Morning News. Beginning today each new unit will be staffed with 44 officers, five sergeants and one lieutenant. “You will have your own little task force at each of the patrol stations,” said Assistant Chief Vince Golbeck, who oversees the city's seven patrol stations.
The new units are the next step in Police Chief David Brown's Community Policing 2.0 plan, aimed at making the department more responsive to the crime problems plaguing neighborhoods. Some of the refocused manpower comes from disbanding the department's centralized 20-member Operation Disruption task force and returning those officers to patrol stations. Brown said he is giving individual patrol commanders more manpower because he believes they are more knowledgeable — and responsive — to neighborhoods' needs. One change creates clearer lines of authority — and more important, accountability. At each station, one lieutenant will oversee neighborhood police officers, or NPOs, who work directly with crime watches and community groups; plainclothes detectives who work on crime problems such as burglaries, robberies and thefts; and crime response squads that mostly target drug houses.