Sarasota Police to host Coffee with a Cop on Thursday, December 8, 2016

SARASOTA, Fla. -- December 2, 2016 -- 8 a.m.

On Thursday, December 8, 2016 from 8:30 a.m. until 10 a.m., Officers from the Sarasota Police Department and community members will come together in an informal, neutral space to discuss community issues, build relationships and drink coffee.  The Coffee with a Cop event will be held at the 12th Street Café, 1100 North Tuttle Avenue, Unit 1, Sarasota.  Members of the public and media are invited to attend.

Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for community members to ask questions and learn more about the Sarasota Police Department’s work in the City of Sarasota’s neighborhoods.

The majority of contacts law enforcement has with the public happen during emergencies or emotional situations.  Those situations are not always the most effective times for relationship building with the community and some community members may feel that Officers are unapproachable on the street.  Coffee with a Cop breaks down barriers and allows for a relaxed, one-on-one interaction.

“We hope that community members will feel comfortable to ask questions, bring concerns, or simply get to know our Officers,” said Chief Bernadette DiPino. “These interactions are the foundation of community partnerships.”

Coffee with a Cop is a national initiative supported by The United States Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. Similar events are being held across the county, as local police departments strive to make lasting connections with the communities they serve.

The program aims to advance the practice of community policing through improving relationships between police officers and community members one cup of coffee at a time.  The Sarasota Police Department began holding Coffee with a Cop events in February 2014.