New Detroit police chief seems opposed to virtual precincts

New Detroit police chief seems opposed to virtual precincts

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Detroit Police Chief James Craig Detroit Police Chief James Craig
DETROIT (WJBK) -

Brenda Daniels' car was stolen on Sunday while she was at church. The unholy act was followed by a whole lot of frustration as she tried to make a police report.

"They asked me to call someone off the wall phone," Daniels explained. "It took quite a while to just make a police report."

Daniels said police were very helpful, but she blamed the virtual precincts for slowing down the process. She was relieved to hear Detroit's new police chief isn't so sure about them, either.

"I haven't heard from the citizens, but ... the police officers say they think it's a bad idea this virtual precinct," Chief James Craig said on Monday.

Craig is already looking at staffing and resources to keep the precincts open instead of the virtual precincts that started in February.

"This is not Culver City, California where we can shut the doors up. This is the City of Detroit. I want to make sure that when a community member needs to come into a police station that the doors are open," Craig said.

Some officers told us the virtual precincts are actually working. It's not like they'll ignore somebody if they're standing outside with an emergency. Plus, they said it allows more officers to be on the street instead of sitting back at the precinct taking reports.

"I picked up the phone and indicated what I needed done because it was a breaking in and went on from there," said Johnny Gunn. "It worked."

Gunn claimed he had no problem when  he had to make a report via a virtual precinct, but the new chief will have to determine what is most effective.

"We've got to have stations that can be accessed by the community. It doesn't work in the City of Detroit," Craig said.

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