NORMAN — The calls started coming just after 7 a.m. June 9. Lots of police cars at Old School Bagel on Main Street. Something bad must be going down there. Maybe a drug deal gone bad? Shooting? Hostage situation?
Yes, something was going on there, but it wasn’t what you think. Norman Police officers were staging their first “Coffee with a Cop,” an event designed for the community to meet informally with Norman police officers in a neutral setting. The events are planned for the second Monday of each month.
It’s part of the overall community policing mindset Norman has adopted. There will never be enough police officers to keep order in the community so all residents have to step up and help.
Building citizen trust is a big part of that relationship. Most public contacts with officers comes during an emergency situation. Those are high-emotion times,not always the most effective places for relationship building in the community.
Coffee with a Cop is a national initiative designed to break down barriers and allow for a relaxed one-on-one conversation in a neutral setting. That next setting will be from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. July 14 at Michalangelo’s, 207 E. Main. We’ll see you there.
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