A Hoosier lawman known statewide for his efforts to build trust and rapport with individuals of diverse ages, professions and cultures will be in Columbus this weekend to participate in a community discussion focusing on the use of force.
Indiana State Police Capt. Ruben Marte’ will lead much of the discussion during the 2 p.m. event Saturday in the Cal Brand Meeting Room in Columbus City Hall, 123 Washington St.
The event is part of the ongoing “Improving Police and Community Relations” discussion sponsored by the African American Pastors Alliance.
In the fall of 2015, most law enforcement officers in the Columbus area were required to receive cultural awareness training in a curriculum both developed and taught by Marte’.
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On Dec. 7, 2015, the 26-year ISP veteran became the first guest speaker when the alliance launched its quarterly discussions on perfecting race relations.
Marte’ told more than 30 in attendance that many Americans are convinced the police disciplinary system is broken and unresponsive to issues.
“Let me be clear. There are bad officers out there, and all of us both want and need to weed them out,” Marte’ said regarding national law enforcement.
But since communities are acknowledging a lack of respect for people as human beings, especially within the minority communities, the situation is a two-way street, Marte’ said.
Too many Americans generalize officers based on either negative experiences or by media reports of allegedly unwarranted police shootings or abuse, the state police captain said.
Beside Marte’, officers from both the Columbus Police Department and the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department are expected to participate in Saturday’s discussion.
The members of the African American Pastors Alliance are ministers representing five local churches:
Dayspring Church of God Apostolic
Faith Hope and Love
God’s House Missionary Baptist
Thy Kingdom Come Ministries
The alliance’s goal is to perfect race relations in Columbus and Bartholomew County and to bring awareness of the racial issues, concerns and tensions that are going on throughout the nation.
Details about a community event titled “Use of Force: A Discussion.”
When: 2 to 4:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: Cal Brand Meeting Room in Columbus City Hall, 123 Washington St.
Discussion leader: Indiana State Police Capt. Ruben Marte’.
Sponsor: African American Pastors Alliance