Operational changes made by Monett police

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Public access to Justice Center, response to some calls limited

Monett Police Chief George Daoud has announced some changes in operational strategies while the community rides out the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

Daoud indicated the following changes are temporary, and not a complete list of changes employed by officers.

Daoud said maintaining maximum staffing during this pandemic is going to be an ongoing challenge that will require a combination of:

• Personnel using personal protective equipment properly and appropriately.

• Clean equipment, vehicles, workstations, building access between shifts.

• Frequent soap and water hand washing

• Stay home if sick

• Social Distancing: maintaining distance approximately 6 feet.

"All routine, non-essential training, meetings are suspended, with personnel from each directed to patrol functions,” he said. “School resource officers are temporarily reassigned to Patrol to assure essential services are provided."

Access to the Justice Center will be restricted except for the public lobby for walk-in traffic, Daoud indicated. Office areas and other rooms will only be available to on-duty personnel.

"In case of quarantined personnel, designated backfill positions are designated for continuation of services," Daoud said.

In general operations, Daoud indicated officers could postpone non-essential station visits for equipment demonstrations or checks. Building visits and tours would be canceled.

Officers would temporarily cease nuisance and traffic enforcement unless hazardous or endangering. Subjects breaking the law would be released on summons or seeking a warrant when possible.

Officers would also be asked to disinfect vehicles to degree possible and practicable between transportation of prisoners.

Officers would continue to respond immediately to priority calls, as well as crimes of physical violence, those involving the mentally ill, children and immediate hazards, as well as other government services requiring personnel to prevent violence. These also include assisting other agencies related to the event.

Some calls are being classified as "mid-level" but will nonetheless receive prompt attention. These include post-incident crime reports, traffic-related calls (those involved in non-injury accidents may be told to exchange information only), mid-level calls for service requiring a timely response, and calls already identified as medium priority.

Daoud indicated some calls would receive a delayed response. These include types of calls generally considered to be low priority. Also, during the weekday day shift, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., officers will take appropriate calls for telephone reporting. If after hours, district cars are not available to take a call and the caller is still on the line, the officer in charge may request the caller be sent to one of the station officers’ voicemails where the caller may be required to wait to speak with an officer.

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