As the new chief of police for the Miami Beach Police Department (MBPD), my commitment and part of my charge is to regain the public trust. I firmly believe there is no better way for our officers to build trust than to forge strong ties with the community we serve.
A major change designed to put feet on the ground is a return to the fundamentals of community policing. This shift is intended to foster long-term organizational effectiveness and accountability by focusing on two simple goals – to continue to lower crimes rates and to enhance Police-community partnerships.
Every shift, officers are assigned to specific geographical sectors, and as a result, give them ownership of the areas they serve and provide for increased accountability of our officers. New walking beats in our commercial corridors are getting the officers out of their cars, walking, interacting with the community. They will get to know the residents, businesses, and the issues that go on in that sector, making them better able to address both crime as well as quality of life issues.
This new approach also means more police resources within these specific geographical sectors, and as a team, our officers are discussing and analyzing trends and how to proactively lower crime in their areas. Moreover, they are actively engaging the community in pre- vention tactics.
To support these efforts, police captains are now assigned to specific areas, instead of being assigned to shifts. This change gives our residents and businesses one face and one name to become familiar with to address their concerns.
Whether it is a crime issue, a quality of life issue, traffic, whatever the case may be, area captains own whatever goes on in that area.
A new initiative, called the Captains’ Neighborhood Walks, was developed by the area captains as they wanted to go out and meet the neighbors, and walk the neighborhoods with their teams. This is an initiative firmly tied to our efforts to forge a productive bond between our department and our residents.
The Captains’ Neighborhood Walks are scheduled in coordination with homeowner associations and business owners. I encourage all of our residents and businesses to engage their area captain and provide us with their observations and concerns, so that we may better address the issues for their areas.
As we continue to implement the necessary reforms to move to MBPD forward, I am certain that the partnerships forged between our officers and the members of this community will bolster our efforts to ensure the public safety.
Captain David De la Espriella
Area 3/Sectors 7 & 8, and beats north from 63 Street, north to 87 Terrace, east to the Atlantic Ocean and west to Biscayne Bay, including the island and waterfront communities.
Captain Richard Clements
Area 2/Sectors 5 & 6, and beats from Dade Boulevard on the south, north to 63 Street, east from the Atlantic Ocean and west to Biscayne Bay, including all the waterfront communities and the Julia Tuttle Causeway to the City of Miami.
Captain Mark Causey
Area 1/Sectors 1, 2, 3, 4, and beats south from Government Cut, north to Dade Boulevard, east to the Atlantic Ocean and west to Biscayne Bay.