APD Recognized for Innovative Strategies
By Arlington Police Department
Posted on July 06, 2015, July 06, 2015


The Arlington Police Department received a special honor, which Police Chief Will Johnson accepted last week on behalf the entire department and our dedicated community. The Texas Police Chiefs Association 2015 Innovation Award recognizes the department's pioneering use of unmanned aircraft systems for public safety purposes and ground-breaking approach to social media.

As technology continues to evolve, the Arlington Police Department strives to be on the cutting edge of developing the tools that most benefit the city's residents, visitors and business partners. These programs succeed because of the units that develop them in addition to the other police employees and community members who provide extensive support.

The hard work of our police employees make honors like this possible and is one of the reasons our department is viewed as a 'best practices' agency for others in the law enforcement profession, Chief Johnson said.

The Aviation Unit's implementation of unmanned aircraft systems demonstrates the department's ability to take an item that people can be unsure about and be open about the use, capabilities and purpose of the equipment.

The Arlington Police Department was one of the first law enforcement agencies to implement an aviation program using unmanned aircraft systems. As we explained our aviation program to the public, we hosted community demonstrations and gave people the opportunity to ask questions. As this technology continues to evolve, the department serves as a model for other departments that evaluate the usefulness and feasibility of this sort of program.

One key to using forward-thinking technology rests in the fact that our police employees recognize that we are empowered to serve by the citizens. To effectively do our jobs, we must continue to have the buy-in of our community.

The police department's footprint in social media gives us unprecedented, direct access to our community and the opportunity to show them the high quality police employees who serve the city of Arlington. The Media Office has received global recognition for its use of social media to reach the community, build relationships and encourage positive interactions between law enforcement and those we serve.

Although there are many ways to reach our residents and visitors, few provide the casual access or comfort level of social media. Great police work that could otherwise be unrecognized is highlighted on social media, showing the community just what our officers do. By humanizing the men and women behind the badge, our officers are better positioned to do their jobs in the community.

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