Fargo Police Chief discusses police reform, priorities moving forward
FARGO, N.D. (KVRR) — Talks of police reform and racial equity are on the minds of many following the murder conviction of former Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin.
Fargo Police Chief David Zibolski, who has served on various forces for more than 30 years, says reform is simply part of the progression of law enforcement.
“In order for us to be successful and work in partnership with our community, we have to have adaptability, flexibility to progress, to be forward-thinkers, in terms of what’s a better way to do something that maybe we’ve done the same way for many years,” Zibolski says.
He explains that a combination of sufficient training, more equipment, building relationships and public education are top priorities.
“The really big focus for some time and continuing going forward is to educate the public in terms of laws and how police should handle stuff, but also in the way that we interrelate with them; respectful manner, kind of get to know our community members more,” he adds.
Zibolski says one of the biggest issues is that some people in the community have the wrong information about how policing works. “A lot of people just don’t know stuff and sometimes police don’t approach it in the right way and we have conflict.”
He says he’s pleased with the verdict the jury reached in the trial of Derek Chauvin.
“It’s good to see that the criminal justice system did its job and I think it’s good for people to see the work of that court,” he adds.
He says body cameras are a necessity in order for the Fargo Police Department to build trust with the community.
Zibolski says he met with leaders from Black Lives Matter Fargo-Moorhead and OneFargo Wednesday morning and will continue working with the community moving forward.
The Fargo City Commission in August approved the Fargo Police Department to move ahead with planning the cost and use of body cameras for officers.