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Law Enforcement and social media

More law enforcement agencies are turning to social media to connect with and engage the communities they serve.

Posted: Aug 2, 2018 9:20 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. – The impact of police-involved shootings can go far beyond the communities where they happen and can lead to increased tension between the public and police. In an effort to break down barriers and interact with the public in a new way, law enforcement agencies in our area and across the country are turning to social media.
If you’ve been on Facebook or Twitter in the past few weeks, you’ve probably seen the latest #LipSyncChallenge craze. The Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office was one of hundreds of departments to create a light-hearted video for their social media followers. The response? According to Sheriff Kevin Torgerson, very positive.
Just in the last week and a half now, we've gained over 1,000 new people watching our page," he explains.
By stepping up their social media game, Sheriff Torgerson says they’ve been able to reach and connect with more people than ever before.

“Our overall motivation is to get them really good solid safety information, public safety information to help them with their daily lives; I hope people see it that way,” he adds. “As we go around and do the crazy things like milking cows or whatever on the other side of it we want to get them really good information."

Information like weather, traffic and safety alerts are now being posted to the department’s pages. On Wednesday for example, OCSD took to Twitter and Facebook to let their followers know 9-1-1 services were being interrupted. Torgerson tells us weekly posts that feature five individuals with active warrants get a lot of attention on social media. “Most Wanted Wednesday” videos lead to a spike in the number of tip calls and messages they receive.

Just over a year ago the Olmsted Co. Sheriff’s Office hired a Media Development Specialist who’s focus is to increase the department’s presence on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.
Other departments like Kasson PD and the Minnesota State Patrol have started doing “virtual ride alongs” where they live-Tweet on patrol to give the public a better idea of the types of calls they go on any given night.

Being so accessible through social media has made it possible for the Olmsted Co. Sheriff’s Office to make new, important connections with citizens on, and offline.
"Even last night, I was out to eat with my uncle and you know you get those comments, we saw your video thanks for doing that so it's people again interacting not only on social media but now out in public they're seeing us as approachable and now there's a connection that maybe we didn't have before or a barrier that's now been broken down,” Torgerson explains.

The hope of local law enforcement officers is this online effort will change the way some view the police.
"We're normal folks, we have families with kids and dogs and cats and we just want to help our community in any way possible and if it means to put out some kind of light hearted video that people look at and go, "Wow that's pretty neat," then that's alright."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 38569

Reported Deaths: 1511
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin12456787
Ramsey4911228
Dakota238291
Stearns237119
Anoka2241109
Nobles16696
Olmsted112915
Washington111440
Mower9522
Rice8447
Scott7344
Clay58738
Kandiyohi5731
Blue Earth4792
Wright4755
Todd4012
Carver3811
Sherburne3175
Lyon3162
Freeborn2920
Watonwan2340
Steele2311
Benton2173
St. Louis18015
Martin1695
Nicollet16912
Cottonwood1360
Goodhue1318
Winona12515
Crow Wing10612
Pine1050
Le Sueur1031
Chisago1001
Otter Tail951
McLeod920
Carlton870
Dodge870
Polk822
Chippewa791
Unassigned7837
Isanti730
Waseca680
Douglas650
Itasca6412
Murray640
Meeker611
Morrison591
Becker560
Faribault560
Jackson550
Sibley542
Pipestone522
Pennington510
Renville352
Mille Lacs342
Wabasha330
Brown312
Rock310
Beltrami300
Fillmore300
Yellow Medicine300
Houston260
Swift221
Wilkin213
Norman200
Redwood180
Cass162
Roseau160
Aitkin150
Big Stone150
Koochiching151
Wadena150
Kanabec141
Grant120
Marshall120
Lincoln100
Pope100
Mahnomen91
Clearwater80
Hubbard70
Lake60
Traverse60
Lac qui Parle40
Stevens40
Red Lake30
Kittson20
Cook10
Lake of the Woods00

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 31670

Reported Deaths: 722
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk6638179
Woodbury325244
Black Hawk230158
Buena Vista171411
Johnson13148
Linn129482
Dallas128029
Marshall104919
Scott81510
Story7793
Pottawattamie73612
Wapello70830
Dubuque70222
Crawford6772
Muscatine64344
Sioux4770
Tama46529
Wright3861
Louisa36213
Jasper32517
Plymouth3225
Warren2901
Dickinson2663
Washington2439
Webster2292
Hamilton1891
Cerro Gordo1821
Boone1481
Clay1340
Clarke1322
Allamakee1314
Mahaska11617
Shelby1140
Clinton1121
Poweshiek1068
Carroll991
Pocahontas971
Bremer946
Des Moines922
Franklin900
Emmet880
Henry863
Cedar841
Taylor790
Hardin770
Monona770
Cherokee751
Floyd732
Marion700
Benton691
Guthrie664
Jefferson640
Sac640
Osceola620
Jones610
Butler572
Buchanan551
Humboldt551
Hancock540
Harrison540
Lee542
Calhoun532
Iowa530
Delaware511
Fayette510
Monroe516
Madison482
Clayton443
Lyon440
Davis411
Palo Alto410
Mitchell390
Winneshiek390
Grundy380
Mills370
Kossuth350
Howard340
Jackson320
Lucas314
Greene300
Chickasaw290
Union290
Winnebago290
Ida240
Cass230
Van Buren220
Appanoose213
Keokuk211
Page210
Worth200
Unassigned170
Adair160
Audubon161
Ringgold160
Decatur120
Montgomery102
Wayne100
Adams80
Fremont70
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