Local Prosecutor Hopes to Engage the Cumberland Community

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Next month the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office is kicking off a series of events that will address issues in the community, the first being office-involved shootings.

Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal announced the 21 County, 21st Century Community Policing Project earlier this month.

“The new Attorney General has charged each county prosecutor to do a series of events on different topics and the first event is the Attorney General 2006-05 Directive on officer-involved shootings,” said Jennifer Webb-McRae, the Cumberland County Prosecutor.

The 21/21 Project was designed to promote a strong relationship between the community and law enforcement by bringing them together in each of the 21 counties at different events.

“I think it’s important and I’m happy to continue our community engagement series with our Community Engagement Advisory Board with the public because I think that having these events builds trust between law enforcement and the community,” said Webb-McRae.

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Part of building that trust comes with explaining how they do things at the Prosecutor’s Office.

“We’ve already had an event on officer-involved shooting as well as what is in an officer’s toolbox for use of force," said Webb-McRae. "But we’re going to go over the directive gain, explain how we do officer-involved shooting investigations so that the public is familiar with that.”

The prosecutor believes in tackling a topic before being faced with the issue during a crisis.

“I am just of the thought process that it’s better to deal with the tough, difficult topics head on through dialogue," said Webb-McRae. "We may not always agree, but sometimes we have to agree to disagree on how things are conducting. But that’s better done in a calm setting rather than in a crisis.”

The event will be held at 6 p.m. on Thursday, May 24th at Union Baptist Temple in Bridgeton.

The public will have an opportunity to address community issues during the question and answer portion of the evening.

“It’s an opportunity for the public to have a dialogue with me and I give my word that I will answer the questions that I can answer as best I can,” said Webb-McRae.

Next month’s event is the first installment of the 21/21 Project. Other events in the series will touch on topics such as immigration enforcement, opioids, and bias crimes.

For more information on this series visit communityengagementseries.com.

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