UMPD’s Deputy Chief Charles Miner presented his case for the chief position on Tuesday

by Alida Tieberg

UMPD Deputy Chief Chuck Miner was the second finalist for the UMPD chief position to present his experience and concerns to the University community in a public forum on Tuesday.
Miner has 15 years of experience with UMPD, including seven years as second in command under Chief Greg Hestness. He has also served as lieutenant, sergeant, detective, and officer in the department. Before joining UMPD, Miner worked in the Minneapolis Park Police Department, the Eden Prairie Police Department, and the Orono Police Department. 
Miner focused his presentation on his experience within the university community, and many of his plans for the position focus on strengthening practices the department already has in place. 
Miner said he has already built strong relationships with the department, community, and students. 
Miner said the biggest public safety challenge on campus is sexual assault and to address it on campus, he would work to improve bystander interventions through community training with police officers. Miner said teaching students to call for help when they see things happening could help these situations.  Miner said encouraging students to report sexual assault incidents is important, citing a social network campaign at the University of Wisconsin-Madison that could be implemented on this campus. 
One audience member asked about the direction that UMPD is moving. Miner responded, saying that UMPD should adapt to the new crimes that arise on campus. To do this, he said, officers need to be open to learning how to respond to different types of crimes. 
Responding to an inquiry about relations between community members and police officers, Miner said racial profiling is an issue that extends past the University. He said a recently established national task force, as well as a more diverse police force, could help address the issue on campus.
Captain James Franklin of the Metropolitan Transit Department presented at the open forum on Wednesday at 2 p.m. in the Best Buy Theater in Northrop Auditorium.