LR Police Chief holds forums to hear community concerns

LITTLE ROCK (KATV)--Holding police and the community accountable, that's the message coming from Little Rock's newest police chief.

Chief Kenton Buckner has now been chief for around a month. Buckner met with residents living in Ward 2 Monday night, asking them what success looks like in Ward 2.

It was a Q&A forum, where community members had the chance to ask the chief what Little Rock Police can do for them, as the chief also discussed how the community can help.

"I want to know, what does success look like as it relates to our operations in your respective communities, that is the sole purpose of this meeting," said Chief Buckner.

In the first of seven forums being held by Chief Buckner, community members came out voicing their concerns.

"I shouldn't be afraid to come home, when I leave my house, there are ten grown men standing there looking at me leave," said one resident.

"There are really serious problems in our communities, and if we face these problems together, there's something from the community that's necessary and something from the police force," said resident Scie Ward.

"The shootings, the gunshots all night every night, just rampant, a very lack of police presence throughout the night when the criminals are more active," said resident Robyn Kelley.

"We each have a roll in what our duties and responsibilities are public safety in the community, police have a responsibility, the schools system has a responsibility, churches, non-profits, it has to be a collective effort," said Buckner.

"These problems are too complex to expect the police to solve all of them so everyone has to do their job and I said again and again tonight, there is no substitute for parenting, parents need to play a big role and dealing with their kids because if you're not, we are just going to go through this vicious cycle that we are currently in right now."

More meetings are scheduled for the following dates:

August 7: 6 p.m., McDermott Elementary School, 1200 Reservoir Rd. (Ward 4)

August 8: 6 p.m., Dunbar Community Center, 1001 West 16th St. (Ward 1)

August 11: 6 p.m., Centre at University Park, 6401 West 12th St. (Ward 6)

August 13: 6 p.m., David O. Dodd Elementary School, 6423 Stagecoach Rd. (Ward 7)

August 18: 6 p.m., Westover Hills Presbyterian Church, 6400 Richard B. Hardie Dr. (Ward 3)

August 21: 6 p.m., Roosevelt Thompson Library, 38 Rahling Circle (Ward 5)