JCSU, local law enforcement agencies team up for Community Security Day on Saturday

The safety panel is from 10:30 a.m. to noon in the Crisp Student Union.
Local law enforcement will visit campus on Saturday to discuss safety both at the school and within the city.
Published: Oct. 28, 2022 at 11:32 PM EDT

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - One Charlotte university is working to bridge the gap between students, the community and local law enforcement.

Johnson C. Smith University hosting its Community Security Day this Saturday, Oct. 29. It’ll be an afternoon of fun, food trucks and a panel on public safety.

JCSU Police Chief Walter Edwards believes you can’t have safe communities without having partnerships.

“This is going to strengthen our relationship with the community,” Edwards said.

The JCSU Police Department has an existing partnership with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office, the DEA, and the ATF.

Edwards said throughout his career he’s learned the best way to create safe spaces is through proactive relationship building like Community Security Day.

“I think it fails when you don’t have that relationship with the community so this is why I think this event tomorrow is so important,” he said.

Tomorrow’s panel will include Major Cecil Brisbon from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Mecklenburg County Sheriff and JCSU alum Garry L. McFadden, JCSU Criminology student Alexis Lawson, and Ms. Dorothy Counts Scoggins, who is a community resident and advocate.

JCSU senior and SGA Vice President Jayla DeBoles believes events like this matter not just for the campus safety, but the greater community on Beatties Ford Road.

“Being able to know that we have a sense of security on the outside of our community and it makes students feel a lot safer,” she said.

DeBoles said one of her administration’s action plans is increasing safety on campus and feels Community Security Day is an extension of those efforts.

All of the law enforcement agencies are doing daily patrols as a proactive response to crime.

“Just being a presence, a presence in the area, it’s a huge deterrent on the streets of Mecklenburg County or whenever you’re on the campus it doesn’t matter. It’s so important that the citizens feel safe as well when they see our squads,” Edwards said.

DeBoles lives off campus and says patrols are helpful for students like her who walk to and from campus daily.

“Being able to know that I have someone looking out for me, more than just myself, especially female students feel a lot more secure,” she said.

Tomorrow’s safety panel is from 10:30 to noon on the second floor of the Crisp Student Union.

The University also partnered with AT&T to host a block party which will include and will follow with food trucks, a SWAT display, and more activities for children, and families. The entire event is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.