Chesterton Tribune



Police Commission meets remotely; crime is down

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The Chesterton Police Commission Zoomed its monthly meeting on Thursday.

The main topic: COVID-19.

Police Chief Dave Cincoski reported that self-isolation and social-distancing have drastically reduced both crime and traffic accidents since Gov. Eric Holcomb issued his shelter-in-place order on March 23:

-- Calls for service had fallen by 40 percent.

-- Custodial arrests, by 100 percent.

-- The issuance of summonses, by 72 percent.

-- Accidents, by 77 percent.

-- Meanwhile, there has been no increase in reports of domestic incidents.

“I give credit to our residents,” Cincoski said. “They’re being respectful and respectful of others, and observing the governor’s shelter-in-place order.” He added that, in the days immediately following the issuance of the order, the CPD was receiving two to four reports per day of violations, at Dogwood Park, for instance. But “those have gone down drastically,” Cincoski said, as officers have been assigned to patrol locations where people have been congregating.

Cincoski also noted that, while calls for service have dropped 40 percent, those calls which are actually being forwarded to officers in the field by the dispatchers have decreased by fully 60 percent, meaning that the dispatchers are able to handle many of the calls themselves.

Member Mike Orlich wanted to know how well officers are stocked with personal protection equipment. Pretty well at this point, Cincoski said. The CPD at the moment is in possession of 120 n95 masks and 100 surgical masks, after the Porter County Emergency Management Agency provided 50 of the former and 20 of the latter.

With the closure of the Duneland Schools, two of the three school resource officers are working cases in the Investigations Division, and the third has been assigned to full-time patrol.

"I wish everyone and their families continued health,” Member Pete Duda said at the end of the meeting, “and I hope and pray this distancing ends soon.”


In other business, members voted unanimously to promote Officers Eric Lisoski and Jacob Ray to the probationary rank of corporal; and Sgt. Dan Rocha to the probationary rank of lieutenant.

Rocha is now working in the Investigations Division.

The promotions will officially take effect on Sunday, April 12.

Hiring Update

By consensus, members agreed to suspend the hiring process and cancel a scheduled executive session until at least its May meeting, at which time--depending on the status of the pandemic and the shelter-in-place order--they may agree to resume it.

Fleet Order

Two of the three squad cars in the 2019 fleet order have been equipped and delivered to the CPD, Cincoski reported. The third is in transit between the dealership and the equipping contractor, Bartronics Inc. of Chesterton.

The 2020 fleet order of three additional squad cars has been delayed until the auto manufacturers are back in operation.

Two Donations

Members gratefully took receipt of two donations to the CPD Gift Fund: $1,000 from Jim Biggs, for the purchase of any needed equipment; and $500 from Layna Bosse.

March in Review

Activity reports for March were not yet available, Cincoski told members.



Posted 4/13/2020




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