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Chief Mike Koval

Madison Police Chief Mike Koval  

Starting Wednesday and continuing over the next couple months, the Madison Police Department will meet with city residents during a series of community forums.

Chief Mike Koval said the forums will allow residents to learn more about MPD initiatives, discuss crime trends and hear from specialty divisions such as the Violent Crime Unit, Gang Unit and neighborhood officers.

At the end of December, consultants released a set of 146 recommendations for the MPD. The OIR Group found that the police department could improve at engaging the community, particularly on controversial topics.

Koval said the department has scheduled events in different areas of the city and hosts them in community centers instead of police facilities to encourage residents to attend.

Koval also said the department is working to engage communities that have typically been underrepresented.

“Some of the people you’d like to have a greater representation, particularly constituents of color, don’t necessarily come with the vim and vigor we see others,” Koval said.

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The community forums are scheduled as follows:

  • Feb. 28 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at North Street Cabaret, 610 North St.
  • March 5 from 5:30 .pm. to 7:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 201 W. Mifflin St.
  • March 22 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Door Creek Church, 6602 Dominion Dr.
  • April 3 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, 1701 McKenna Blvd.
  • May 9 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Bayview International Center for Education and the Arts, 601 Bayview, in the second floor community room

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Abigail Becker joined The Capital Times in 2016, where she primarily covers city and county government. She previously worked for the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and the Wisconsin State Journal.