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Boulder PD to adopt new policing strategy that focuses on crime prevention, problem solving

The “Reimagine Policing Plan” focuses less on incarceration and has a greater emphasis on community engagement


Boulder Police Department

By Sarah Roebuck

BOULDER, Colo. — The Boulder Police Department will be adopting a new policing strategy after the city council unanimously approved the policy during a meeting on Sept. 7.

The plan, called “Reimagine Policing,” adopts a more holistic governance approach for addressing crime, focusing less on incarceration and a greater emphasis on community engagement by partnering with community members, Denver 7 reports.

The plan focuses on preventative policies and problem-solving.

The plan outlines three objectives for Boulder PD:

  1. Tackle staffing requirements and reconfigure assignments to enable officers to allocate approximately 40% of their shift time to crime prevention and resolving issues.
  2. Provide comprehensive de-escalation strategy and technique training to all officers.
  3. Attend to the wellbeing and emotional health of Boulder PD staff members.

The city contracted The National Policing Institute to gain insights into public perceptions of policing in Boulder. This thorough assessment extended over a period of 19 months. The findings revealed that 59% of participants expressed satisfaction with how Boulder police handle issues in their neighborhoods. Moreover, a unanimous 100% of participants reported that officers treated them politely.

Additionally, the plan incorporates neighborhood gatherings in areas of the city with increased call volumes, as well as the development of an online tool that will enable community members to provide feedback on their interactions with officers after each encounter.

In the end, the plan’s ultimate aim is to diminish both crime and disorder, Boulder Police Chief Maris Herold stated in a guest opinion on the Daily Camera.

“Society must hold people accountable for violating the law. How we hold people accountable is debatable, but the harm experienced by community members and officers who respond to repeated criminal behavior cannot be ignored. Our plan calls for action to address these harms,” Herold wrote on the Daily Camera. “Early results are promising. Boulder’s pilot problem-solving projects have resulted in significant crime reductions and improved relationships between the police department and the community partners we’ve worked with.”