Newport News Police focus on community to stop recent violence

NEWPORT NEWS Va.-  This week alone there have been four shootings in the City of Newport News.

On Tuesday, 23-year-old Devon Bowles was shot multiple times and pronounced dead on scene.

“Newport News has seen three homicides this year. It is very unfortunate. Three separate families are affected by this and we are trying our best as a department to solve them and bring them closure,” said Master Police Officer Brandon Maynard said.

Maynard says the department hopes to solve the problem from the inside out, starting with their community relationships.

“You have to get in with the community. We want their help, but we can’t just go to the community when we need help. We need to be there all the time,” Maynard said.

Next Tuesday, the department will host their third Chief-on-the-Go event at the Wawa on Warwick Blvd.

They hope to meet with the community for “Coffee With a Cop” on March 14 at the Vancostas restaurant.

Maynard says this is just the beginning.

“Take a tour of the bus. Ask him questions just a little one on one chat. We have coffee with a cop. A chance for people before work to come in and have coffee with a cop,” Maynard said.

As the department works to dive deeper into the community, Maynard says he hopes the community will do the same in return.

He wants to change the view the community has of its officers.

To realize they are people too, wanting the same thing: A safe community.

“We need to be one and the violence needs to stop it really does. We talk about it all the time, but it’s not enough to talk about it. We need to act and that’s what we are doing,” Maynard said.

Maynard said the department is also pushing for the community to become more involved with reporting crime through the Crime Line but also through their new online system.

Through P3Tips.com, all submissions are completely anonymous and, according to Maynard, extremely helpful.

Related:

Family and friends of Newport News man shot and killed honor his life at vigil 

Mother grieves loss of youngest son, killed by gunman in Newport News 

Newport News Police calling for community’s help after homicide