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Arroyo Grande Police Department seeks community input

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City of Arroyo Grande

ARROYO GRANDE, Calif. - The Arroyo Grande City Council discussed several issues, including police training and procedures at Tuesday's meeting.

The Arroyo Grande Police Department asked the city council and public for feedback on policy and training.

It comes as protesters ask to defund the police and move funding to community resources for public health and homelessness.

City Council Member and former police officer Keith Storton said the question the community needs to discuss is "what does public safety mean."

He said law enforcement is asked to wear many hats and be specialized in many things, a thought echoed by some public comments.

According to the police department, out of almost 700 arrests last year, only 15 involved use of force. There were no complaints in those use of force cases.

Commander Mike Martinez said that statistic is partly due to their localized training process. "We focus on training that is both relevant to our community and current with local, state, and national issues," he said.

The department is not using the carotid restraint, a maneuver to render someone unconscious.

Police Chief Beau Pryor said that that particular restraint is under review. "I think it's going to become an industry standard either way whether it's going to be used or not used," he said.

To move forward, the Mayor Caren Ray Russom suggested creating a civilian task force.

The department says their policies are already very similar to those asked for in the 8 Can't Wait campaign, which seeks to end police brutality through police reform.

Local Politics / Safety / San Luis Obispo County

Anikka Abbott

Anikka Abbott is a reporter for KEYT | KCOY | KKFX.

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