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HBG police hoping new partnership will help curb violence in the community

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The Harrisburg School District and Harrisburg Police are teaming up with student safety in mind.

School and police leaders came together at Harrisburg School District administration building Friday to announce plans for their new partnership. This comes after a tragic 2018 for the district.

Nona Arroyo has three grandkids in the Harrisburg School District. She’s supporting Friday’s announcement. The school district and police are partnering to build positive relationships between students, families, the community and police.

“Maybe there will be less things that happen in the school because I know a lot of things that happen in the school but I think it would be a good idea,” said Nona Arroyo.

Although no specific numbers were readily available Friday night, Harrisburg Police say incidents involving juveniles went down in 2017 but went back up in 2018.

A student was stabbed in the arm at John Harris High School in April 2018.

Kobe Santiago, a Harrisburg freshman, died in the car he was driving in November 2018.

The car, which Harrisburg Police say was stolen, came to rest along Brookwood Street after a chase with law enforcement.

Donnell Williams, also a Harrisburg freshman, was shot and killed in a home on Bellevue Road in Harrisburg in December 2018.

“I’m talking about a partnership so that students get to know the police. The police get to know the students so that we both feel safe, we both have an understanding,” said Thomas Carter, Harrisburg Police Department Commissioner.

A soft rollout of the partnership included ice cream socials this past September with 3,000 students along with police, totaling more than 20 hours of interactions. It was an event attended by Harrisburg fourth grader Javiana Williams-Nieves.

“Do you like seeing the police officers,” asked CBS21’s Brendan Kinney. “Yeah because they save lives and stuff,” answered Javiana Williams-Nieves.

Harrisburg school and police leaders say they’ve been brainstorming ways to make for a safer school and community environment for the past six months.

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