In New Iberia, the police department is getting ideas from residents on how to reduce crime.
Monday night, the community was able to voice their concerns and hear about safety improvements in the area at a town hall at the Martin Luther King Center.
“We just wanted to address where we are as a department in the first 90 days and allow members of the community to ask questions upon our department and basically engage and find out what we can do better,” said Police Chief Todd D’Albor.
Dozens of residents came to share their safety concerns.
“I would like to know if the police department could make more rounds because there’s a lot of elderly people in my neighborhood and they have a lot of young people that pass through the clubs and have guns and knock on our doors and stuff and I really don’t feel safe,” said one member of the audience.
They also commended the work of the new police department.
“The work y’all are doing out there, we notice it. We can see it,” said another member of the audience.
Nursey McNeal, who was born and raised in the city says she’s seen an improvement since the department began again.
“There was a lot of criminal activity going on, shootings, robberies, you know things like that. But now with the new police department it has quieted down quite a bit and I hope it continues,” she said. “Especially the ones that live alone, you know, now they feel like they can come outside or walk the neighborhood or something like that.”
Something that Chief D’Albor agrees with.
“I mean our major crimes our down and that’s attributed to the visibility of our patrol officers, doing a good job of getting into the neighborhoods, listening to people’s concerns and being where those troubles were in the past,” he said.
And although improvements won’t happen overnight D’Albor said after events like this, he hopes people will feel more compelled to be their eyes and ears in the community.
“We need to continue to get into our community, continue to talk to the people that live here, the people that work here, find out what their concerns are and address those concerns. It’s just that simple. When you do community policing, it’s listening to what those concerns are,” he said.