Former police chief to explore strategies to address police excessive use of force, Oct. 3

The use of excessive force by the police continues to strain relationships with certain historically marginalized groups in society. Retired police chief David Couper will join the Mount Mercy University community on Wed., Oct. 3, at 6:30 p.m. in Flaherty Community Room to examine this issue and provide recommendations to improve these relationships.

“This talk is especially timely, as several national polls suggest relatively low levels of public confidence in the police as well as contrasting views on the legitimacy of police use of deadly force, especially along racial and political lines,” said Chad Loes, MMU professor of criminal justice. “Given that attitudes toward the police are a strong determinant of police effectiveness, it is critical for the police to continually and systematically evaluate the public’s perceptions of their work.”

Topics for discussion will include ways in which the police can help build better relationships with the communities they serve, as well as trusting the police to support the values of a free society. Attendees will have an opportunity to ask questions.

Chief Couper retired from the Madison Police Department and now serves as a priest in North Lake, Wisc. He has written several books on policing and speaks regularly to various groups about relations between the police and the citizens they serve.

For more information about Chief Couper, visit

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