Metropolis police chief responds to Baltimore riots - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Metropolis police chief responds to Baltimore riots

METROPOLIS, IL (KFVS) -

With all eyes on the city of Baltimore some area law enforcement officials feel all eyes are on them too.

Seeing the chaos on Television put Chief Harry Masse with the Metropolis Police Department on edge. But, he says that he feels lucky to work in a community that has a good relationships between officers and citizens, which he calls the foundation of all peace efforts.

In a community 10 times smaller than the city of Baltimore, Chief Masse says officers have more time to interact with folks outside of responding to emergency calls – officers in bigger cities, like Baltimore don't have that luxury.

He says the success of a his department comes from having an open door policy.

He says when that line of communication is broken, that's when the mistrust starts.

“The only interaction they are having with the public is during that short period of time where they are either arresting them or making the report and then moving on to the next one, Masse said. "We are lucky here that we are just not swamped totally 24-hours a day. Our officers are able to interact with the public."

With everyone today owning a cell phone, Chief Masse was asked if that changes the way his officers respond to calls.

He says that's not necessarily a bad thing or anything new.

He tells his officers to just be more aware.

As for his brothers in blue in Baltimore, watching from hundreds of miles away is tough.

Chief Masse says he hopes the violence comes to a stop soon.

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