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Law School Hosts Town Hall Meeting for Community, Police

 North Carolina Central University (NCCU) School of Law invites the public to the third in a series of town hall meetings to discuss plans for improving relations between police and local citizens across North Carolina

The meeting will take place on Wednesday, June 28, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at NCCU School of Law, 640 Nelson St., Durham, N.C., 27707.

The event, co-sponsored by the North Carolina Association of Chiefs of Police, the Charles Hamilton Houston Foundation, community leaders, WTVD ABC 11, University of North Carolina System and the NCCU School of Law Virtual Justice Project, is intended to foster discussion about ways to establish, maintain and improve relations between communities and police. A panel including local area and university police chiefs as well as community leaders will answer audience questions using high-definition video conferencing and telepresence.

Additional locations participating are Carolyn T. High Memorial Library in Whiteville, N.C., Chadbourn Community Library, Tabor City Library, Christian Faith Center in Creedmoor, N.C., Mt. Zion United Church of Christ in Henderson, N.C., Elizabeth City State University, and several others.

DeWarren Langley, executive director of the Charles Hamilton Houston Foundation, which supports career and social development of young black males, is among a number of community advocates who will be on hand for the discussion.

Langley said that the June 16, 2017, acquittal of a police officer in the July 2016 death of Philando Castile during a St. Paul, Minn., traffic stop further highlights the need for improvements in police-community relations.

“It’s very troubling that even though Mr. Castile did everything he was supposed to do in responding to the traffic stop, he ends up being killed,” Langley said. “It raises a lot of concern.”

Training for police on racial equity and de-escalation tactics is needed, but also a more positive relationship with the communities they serve, he added.

“This is a critical issue: How do we ensure that there are appropriate and effective relationships between the community and law enforcement?”

Two previous forums focused on a number issues that need to be addressed, including more opportunities for youth and adults in low-income neighborhoods.

“For this event, we would like the focus to be on solutions that will help build, improve and maintain positive community-police relations in North Carolina,” said Ashley D. Morton, of the NCCU Virtual Justice Project.

For additional information or special accommodations, please contact Greg Clinton at gclinton@nccu.edu or 919-530-7174.

Published: Friday, June 23, 2017
by Senior Writer and Editor, Renee Elder
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