COLOMB, Georgia ( WRBL) – Columbus Police Chief Freddie Blackmon hosted a neighborhood community meeting at the Columbus Marriott.
Citizens expressed their concerns and thoughts about the community. Issues such as hot spots, corporate violence, shootings and homelessness were raised. Blackmon assured the community that all of their concerns have been heard and that CPD will look into them. Blackmon explained to the community how to report crimes or concerns they might have to 911.
Many citizens have expressed their concerns about homelessness in the city. A citizen told Blackmon he understands they have nowhere to go but something needs to be done.
Citizens also asked Blackmon if an ordinance could be put in place regarding loud music and violence in local businesses. A lady asked Blackmon if a three-warning order and your restraining order could be put in place to shut down a business if it had more than three violent offenses. Blackmon told the individual that a business can only be closed if the violence recurs or an order is put in place with those specific details.
Blackmon wanted citizens to know about crime hot spots in town. Such as 5th Street and 1 Ave between 8th and 9th. A citizen called Blackmon’s attention to how they reach those who don’t trust the police as much. Blackmon responded to the citizen by telling them that the officers had passageways through town that they were passing through to reach out to community members and try to build trust. He also said that it would take some time to build that trust among parts of the community.
Blackmon told News 3 he wants citizens to feel like their voices are being heard.
“To meet members of our community, get involved and listen to their concerns. Be able to communicate the law enforcement perspective on why decisions are made from a law enforcement perspective. So we want all of our citizens to know that we want them to engage with law enforcement and we want our officers to talk to our citizens, ”Blackmon said.
The citizens in the room wanted to thank Blackmon and CPD for all of their hard work. Blackmon wants the community to report crimes and non-emergency crimes to 911.
“We want our citizens to always feel safe and know that we always take crime very seriously at the Columbus Police Department. In doing so, we will maintain a very high visibility in Columbus and in the various neighborhoods of Columbus, ”said Blackmon.