CENTRE COUNTY, Pa (WTAJ) — A local township is taking a closer look at the operations of its police department, in particular, the “use of force” policies.
The Patton Township supervisors said they’re taking the initiative with the help of the department and residents, as part of the national conversation on policing.
“A lot of times you hear that officers training is to shoot to kill, our officers are trained to shoot to stop,” Patton Township Police Chief Tyler Jolley said.
Chief Jolley said the department’s current policy is in line with the Pennsylvania Crimes Code, but resident Benjamin Jones is proposing what he said is a stronger deadly force policy.
“I think that it’s important that tactics that line up with the sort of policies that are on the books,” Jones said.
Jones said a revised policy with training would be most effective.
“More robust de-escalation tactics so in the example, I showed earlier from Sarasota, fatal deadly force isn’t used within a minute of the encounter,” Jones said.
Patton Township supervisor, Pamela Robb, said she is looking forward to tackling this issue together.
“Being a person of color, being a former police chaplain I’ve seen both sides so it’s hard and I am just hoping for patience understanding for both sides,” Robb said.
The board will continue to discuss changes in the policy for weeks to come and as they do…
“As we move forward on this issue I hope each and every one of us, our public that’s listening, can take the time to see each other for not the color of their skin but who the individual is,” Robb said.
The supervisors aren’t expected to vote on the policy until June 16th at the earliest.