VIDEO: Governor Chris Christie Visits Camden to Thank Police DepartmentPosted:
CAMDEN COUNTY - Governor Chris Christie stopped in Camden County today to talk with local officers at a community policing event.
Two years ago, the Camden County Police Department officially took over as primary law enforcement for the City of Camden. Governor Chris Christie met with the department today to acknowledge their efforts and to thank them for all of their help in making Camden a safer place to live and visit.
“You all are the proof that what was once the most violent city in America can be turned around with leaders who come together to get things done and to support each and every one of you in uniform," said Governor Chris Christie. "An officer who makes an arrest for armed robbery in this city is the same officer who might be found playing basketball with kids in the neighborhood after school.”
According to the Governor, thanks to the estimated 400 officers on the streets of Camden, there has been a 53% reduction in homicides and a 38% reduction in robberies since 2012. Certain areas of Camden once had a response time of two hours, and today the average is two minutes.
“On May 1st, 2013, we embarked upon a journey," said Chief John Scott Thomson, Camden County Police Department. "A journey to make this city a safer, fair place. And what the men and women who are standing behind me, and the folks that are sitting in front of me, adopted was a belief that our actions could create an environment where people could let their children out front of their houses to ride their bikes, and they could sit on their front steps and enjoy each other’s company. And we did this by being community builders before we were law enforcement officers. Being guardians before we were warriors.”
Governor Chris Christie said during his 28th visit to the City of Camden that there has been a 26% decrease in crime since 2012 and that this police force should be an example for the rest of the country.
“Officers are making a difference in the community," said Governor Chris Christie. "Working with the community to help prevent what’s going on. And what you’re doing here is so unique and it’s so powerful, and so important for a symbol for our country today.”
The Governor also announced that he will be declaring Thursday, November 5th as Law Enforcement Appreciation Day in New Jersey, for the state to say thank you to officers and all of their efforts.
“It’s important to do," said Governor Chris Christie. "It’s important for the state to recognize and acknowledge the great sacrifice and contribution all of you are making, and as Governor, I want to help lead that effort.”
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