Paterson’s community policing is evolving 2023

Officials claimed Paterson’s community policing division wants to create a second base in the 1st Ward’s Northside area with a new objective.

The Paterson Housing Authority stated this week that lease discussions are underway to allow community policing to utilize the Temple Street community center for its services.

Since 2018, the community policing unit’s substation inside the South Paterson library branch in the 6th Ward has housed over a dozen policemen. Five years ago, campaigners questioned the necessity for a police substation in Paterson’s lowest-crime district.

Mayor Andre Sayegh said the lease will expand community policing around the city.

“You’ll have them in the Northside and Southside,”

The state takeover of the Paterson police department calls for community policing in the crime-ridden 1st Ward.

The city’s officer-in-charge, Isa Abbassi, wants to change community policing.

Community policing has traditionally organized concerts, cookouts, and camps for residents.

Last month, Abbassi released a “strategic vision” for the agency that prioritized community policing.

Abbassi’s top three community policing changes were:

  • Focus on crime prevention.
  • Address life quality.
  • Arrest community members that victimize the innocent and cause violence.

Paterson police officers said community policing personnel seldom made arrests in the last decade.

The attorney general’s press office did not address community policing heading to Paterson. Instead, state authorities said, “Community Policing is one of the main pillars of officer-in-charge Abbassi’s plan to bring the next generation of the Paterson Police Department.”

Housing authority officials stated Temple Street center lease discussions encompassed 20,293 square feet. Housing authorities claimed that area is utilized for social activities including camps, basketball, conferences, community meetings, and holiday festivities. Officials stated community policing will keep those uses.

Sayegh believes community policing activities like December’s “Shop with a Cop” and the ongoing “Bowl with the Blue” are crucial to building confidence between police and municipal citizens.

The mayor said many residents felt the initiatives changed their views of police.

Abbassi’s strategic vision lists community policing’s “build bridges” position last.

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About the Author: Sanjh Vishwakarma

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