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 For Immediate Release
September 17, 2003

COPS OFFICE AWARDS $1.7 MILLION TO FUND POLICE INTEGRITY INITIATIVES

Boston, San Diego, Va. Beach, and Sacramento County Law Enforcement Agencies Receive Grants

The U.S. Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) has awarded four law enforcement agencies $1.7 million in grants to fund police integrity initiatives. The grants are being awarded to the Boston, San Diego, and Virginia Beach Police Departments, and the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. The funds will be used to develop innovative programs that address policies and practices that could impact organizational culture within law enforcement agencies. The results of these programs will be published by COPS and will serve as technical assistance resources to law enforcement agencies nationwide.

Recruitment and hiring, use of force, traffic-stop data collection, accountability, and other issues that impact the level of mutual trust and respect between police and the community are commonly referred to as issues of police integrity by the law enforcement field.

"Proactive community policing strategies that help create cultures of integrity within law enforcement agencies ultimately help to strengthen the relationship between police and the citizens they serve," said COPS Director Carl R. Peed. "If you look at some of the most high profile law enforcement cases over the last decade it is clear that the relationship between police and the community is of vital importance. Today's grants will provide law enforcement with examples of how to enhance integrity within their organizations and subsequently strengthen the relationship with their communities."

Since 1995, COPS has provided more than $6.9 billion to nearly 13,000 state and local law enforcement agencies to hire over 118,000 officers, deputies, and troopers. COPS also provides law enforcement agencies with an array of community policing training and technical assistance resources.

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