Brockton: Police send message of ‘friend not foe’ to junior high students

For this year’s Public Safety Day, Brockton middle school students were exposed to police and fire equipment, a car rollover simulation, and K-9 obedience training in hopes of attracting them to a career in law enforcement–but also to get them thinking about making the right decisions.

“We’d like to defer them from bullying, getting involved with the wrong crowd, drug use; you know juvenile stuff like that. Middle school’s a real turning point,” said Brockton Police Lieutenant Donnie Mills.

Mills  explained that though crime has been linked to the urban area of 100,000 residents, their connection with other departments has created a major physical presence.

“There might be a reputation, I don’t know if it’s necessarily true, but the Brockton and State police have been working together for years. It’s not uncommon in the evening to have a car with one trooper, two Brockton or two troopers, one Brockton working together in unison with the gang units and community action teams.”

Brockton and State Police officers repeatedly stated they want to connect with the teenage students for them to understand law enforcement’s not the enemy.

The police officers mentioned they’ve seen an improvement amongst teenage students at the North Junior High School with students feeling more comfortable to speak with school officers.

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About Trisha McNeilly

With a Bachelor’s Degree in American Studies from the University of Massachusetts-Boston under her belt, Trisha McNeilly joins us full-time as a general assignment and breaking news reporter having previously interned for WBZ-1030 AM in Boston. A South Shore resident her whole life, McNeilly grew up in Pembroke and is 22-years old.