Binghamton seeks to foster police-community relationship with more ‘walking’ officers

Published: May. 31, 2023 at 10:33 AM EDT
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BINGHAMTON (WBNG) -- Binghamton residents may start to notice police walking around their neighborhoods more often. Binghamton Mayor Jared Kraham said this is all part of a community policing initiative.

He also mentioned the city has not reduced the number of car patrols; this is now an additional opportunity for officers to work overtime shifts where they’re walking around neighborhood streets.

Kraham said this is all in an effort to foster relationships between police and the community.

“We want police to be out in the community but not just when there are calls for service but when it’s slower and there’s not the immediate need or calling of police so to develop these relationships with residents, have a neighborly approach, had out their business cards, say hello, and introduce themselves to the community,” said Kraham.

Binghamton Police Department Captain David Bidwell said walking around neighborhoods and getting to know the community is one of his favorite things about his job.

“I’m going on to my 19th year so I can tell you, of all the things I’ve done here, I’ve had a lot of different positions and I think that this is definitely one of the most meaningful things that I’ve done as a police officer,” said Bidwell. “When you walk into the neighborhoods, it’s been great to feel the love.”

Captain Bidwell said they plan on walking around neighborhoods more often now with warmer weather approaching.

Mayor Kraham said the approach has been wildly successful based on the feedback he’s received from police officers who have worked the shifts.