Virginia Beach Police Appoint African American Community Liaison Officer

sergeant. Christopher “Chris” Washington has been with the department for 12 years. He said he was passionate about connecting with his community.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Virginia Beach Police Department has named Sgt. Christopher “Chris” Washington as his first Liaison with the African-American communityand Washington said it was excited to start filling in the gaps.

“I wanted to be an example,” he said. “I wanted our black community, some of our young people to see more than basketball and music and entertainment.”

This call led Washington to law enforcement.

Washington said that although the position is new, he has always had a passion for connecting with the community.

In a video introduction, Washington showed it. He said he started out as a school resource officer and loved feeling like a part of people’s lives.

“I was able to talk to the kids every day,” he told 13News Now. “I was able to be like a substitute teacher for them, helping them educate them in things they didn’t know, navigate domestic situations, understand the importance of education or even conflict resolution. .”

He brings life experience to the liaison position, as much as he brings career experience.

“One thing I always tell people is that I was a man for 25 years before I joined the police department, so I have a community perspective,” he said. . “I remember what it was like, not understanding, hearing things on the news and coming to my own conclusions. But over the past 14 years I’ve seen the other side. I I have answers to those questions that I have, and I’m trying to bring that up in the community.”

A statement from the department says one of Washington’s goals is to build trusting relationships with neighborhoods, churches and schools. He also said that the VBPD wants “all members of the community to feel treated with respect and dignity.”

sergeant. Washington said he would work with Chief Paul Neudigate to develop strategies to build trust between officers and the community. Washington said he has always taken a professional approach to work, and for him, “integrity and righteousness” are the most important aspects to uphold.

“It’s time we took advantage of having a police chief and staff who were open and ready to ask people to say, ‘Have this conversation,'” Washington said. “So if this is the time to do this – this is an area where we want to see real growth, we want to see the expansion of the department and the community by coming together – then this is the opportunity.”

You can watch his full introduction in the video below:

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