TPD discusses recent spike in violent crime at 6th SPCP meeting

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - The Washburn community continues to cope with recent violence - including the April shooting death of a football player and a weekend shooting near campus.

Against that backdrop - the Topeka Police Department held it's sixth 'Strengthening Police and Community Partnerships meeting Monday night on campus.

The biggest point of discussion Monday night was community safety in this month's district, district six.

With the recently filed charges in the Dwane Simmons case - and a weekend shooting near the same area - people in district six wanted to know what the department is doing to keep them safe.

Topeka police are holding these meetings in each of the city's nine council districts.

Monday's meeting - the sixth - had one of the best turnouts so far.

"We had a lot of folks here. And not only that, we had a lot of folks wanting to engage," said TPD Major Russell Klumpp, who led the discussion.

"I thought it was very very helpful," said district six resident Carol Christensen.

Many people wanted to know how TPD is dealing with a recent spike in violent crime.

One answer - an increase in manpower near campus, and an increase in cooperation with Washburn Police.

"We've always had a really good relationship with them, but it's become even stronger in the last few months," said Washburn Police Chief Chris Enos.

"The violent crime issue is a serious issue. It affects our students and our members of the community, and it affects officers. It's a systemic issue, so it's not something that's easy and quick to fix, but it's something that I think with community partnerships and building these relationships, that maybe we can start to make a dent."

Major Klumpp agreed.

"That's why we're here," he said.

"There's really nothing that beats face-to-face communication ... These meetings allow us to get the feedback that we need to be better as a police agency."

To find out when the next SPCP meeting will be, click here.