A month into his new job as Portland's police chief, Mike Reese said Tuesday he wants to transform training from a "fear-based model" -- where officers are taught to think a motorist reaching toward a floorboard is going for a gun -- to one founded on "competency and confidence" -- where a mentally ill man isn't treated like a bank robber.
"That's a mind shift and a culture shift we have to make in the Portland Police Bureau," Reese said Tuesday, speaking to The Oregonian's editorial board after three deadly police shootings this year.
Reese didn't provide specifics on how that momentous shift would occur, but said he's not going to leave it up to his training division alone, but expect what he calls an "all hands-on deck" buy-in from units throughout the bureau.
Reese said he also plans to revive by September a chief's advisory panel, made up of diverse community representatives who would meet with him every other month. He pledged to hold broader discussions with community groups to gauge how the police bureau's values, policies and training can better reflect those of its residents.
Reese, who was sworn in as chief on May 12 after the mayor kicked Rosie Sizer out amid a highly-publicized budget dispute, said his top priority will be to regain the public's trust in the bureau.
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