“I want to bring this police department back to the community,” Chief Ciminelli began, “which is how I remember it.”
Rochester Chief of Police Michael Ciminelli delivered a talk to a group of Rochester Hispanic Business Association members at the Rochester Business Alliance offices on State Street this Tuesday. He opened by reflecting on his long career in law enforcement, which he started by walking an overnight beat downtown.
In the years since, Ciminelli traveled to Washington and abroad as an international law attorney for the DEA. He has been an auditor for law enforcement agency accreditation, a prosecutor, an advocate for the incarcerated, and the Chief of Police for Elmira, NY. Since returning to Rochester, he has played many leadership roles as Commander for the West side patron division, the head of Special Operations for the RPD, the Deputy Chief of Police, and has served as the Chief of Police since last January.
This week saw the rollout of a redistricting and decentralization plan for the department, so the presentation focused largely on how Rochester police can be closer to the communities they protect. Ciminelli explained that the transition from two large precincts to five smaller ones is only part of the solution, saying “You don’t achieve community policing by redrawing lines on a map– the burden is on us now.”
The RPD is now implementing reforms that encourage each patrol officer to meet the residents and business owners on his or her beat, and is encouraging citizens to get involved through initiatives like the Explorers program and Citizens Police Academy. More information on the redistricting and community outreach are available here.
The RHBA’s luncheon event series continues on May 19 at D’Mangu, and will feature Iveth Reynolds, an entrepreneur and the CEO of Tri-Mar Consulting.