Edward Flynn, Milwaukee’s next police chief, is due in town this week for his first visit since his appointment to the job, says the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Consultant George Kelling, a Milwaukee native who has been reviewing Milwaukee Police Department operations, said the city can expect “openness, transparency, and candor” from Flynn. Kelling has known Flynn since the mid-1980s and, along with consultant Robert Wasserman, suggested Flynn’s appointment. Former Police Chief Nannette Hegerty retired Nov. 16 after serving a four-year term.
Kelling said under Flynn he would expect to see more authority and accountability, in the hands of district captains; strong reliance on data analysis to identify crime trends; and a push to build relationships throughout the community. “The priorities will be what the priorities of the neighborhoods are,” said Kelling. “Different neighborhoods have different priorities.” While an outsider has to spend time learning a community, Kelling noted that an outsider can also bring a fresh perspective. He cited the case of problems in New York City subways. Everyone accepted that the problems were due to homelessness. “The problem wasn’t homelessness. The problem was lawlessness. I think that is the advantage of an outsider. Places have a tradition of, ‘This is how you handle this type of problem.’ An outsider can look at it differently, bring in a fresh perspective.”