MADISON, Wis. — A community response team made up of trained civilians in Madison was sent to its first crime scene this week.

The team responded Tuesday to help a man who had been wounded in a shooting. WKOW-TV (http://bit.ly/2qvp32B ) reports that Mayor Paul Soglin said the deployment came after months of discussions about enhancing the city’s response to gun crimes. Soglin said the team is to help with getting critical information and facilitating emergency services.

Madison Police Capt. Jim Wheeler said the team may have a calming influence and help de-escalate tension over police presence at crime scenes.

“This is not meant to supplement the gathering of information by police,” Wheeler said.

Soglin said he hopes the team can help encourage witnesses to cooperate with police. He said they want team members to have “a post-investigative role in terms of talking to individuals who are witnesses or victims, and seeing if they can build trust and confidence and get the necessary information.”

He said he plans to adopt a formal arrangement between the team and the city in the next two months. It will include details on the scope of the team participants’ work and funding for compensating them.


Information from: WKOW-TV, http://www.wkow.com