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Public Service Announcement – Change In Social Media Release

The Southern Chester County Regional Police Department is dedicated to transparency. We have demonstrated our commitment to the President’s Task Force recommendations for 21st Century Policing[1] by managing two websites, two social media platforms, producing a weekly arrest and activities blotter, and a comprehensive quarterly and annual report.  We welcome invitations from our media partners to join them in a discussion or respond to their questions, no matter how unpleasant the topic.

In 2013, when we first launched our Facebook page, we researched and discussed at length the benefits and uses of a social media platform.  There’s no doubt, Facebook has had its benefits and served as a force multiplier for us to get out important and timely public safety information. 

In the past five years, we have been confronted as to why we post a weekly Arrest Blotter, which includes the photographs of persons that one can only presume were taken at the worst time of their life.  Our response was twofold; first it was public information and second it was a deterrent.  We never intended to embarrass or shame arrestees, but we acknowledge that social media platforms have a negative side and can be used for that very purpose. 

In light of this, we have reevaluated and evolved our position on the use of social media as a means for public deterrence.  Effective May 1, 2018, we will end the practice of posting our weekly Arrest Blotter and related photographs on our Facebook and Twitter pages.  Additionally, we will be undertaking an effort to purge all Arrest Blotter posts dating back to the creation of our page.  

In attempt to strike a balance of the public’s right to know and our efforts to be transparent, in the future we will announce on our social media pages that our weekly arrest blotter is available on our managed website known as CrimeWatch, www.sccrpd.org.  In the future, individuals arrested or wanted will only be posted on social media if there is an overriding public safety concern. 

We believe that this additional step to access the arrest information prevents and discourages the public user from making embarrassing or inappropriate comments, sharing to another’s social media page, and puts an end to the perpetual shelf life of this incident.  We are a Nation of second chances and we support efforts for the people we encounter to make their lives whole again.  

Crimewatch

 

 

 

Questions about this press release can be directed to the Chief of Police’s office at 610-268-2907, extension 105.

[1] http://noblenational.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/President-Barack-Oba...