New Lawrence Police Chief Making Policy Changes

The Police Chief in Lawrence since January, Rich Lockhart, has made a couple of policy changes for the department.

Lockhart says that he met with several community members and groups with concerns related to the police department.

He says that national news coverage brought many questions and comments surrounding the department’s approach to chokeholds and no-knock warrants.

Lockhart says no-knock search warrants do not place the value of human life as a priority, and are dangerous to all involved.

Even though chokeholds and no-knock warrants were not a practice of the Lawrence Police Department, these tactics are now banned.

The department’s policy manual will be updated to reflect these changes.

The local NAACP Political Action Committee asked the department to place a greater emphasis on de-escalation in the department’s Use of Force Policy.

The new policy has moved de-escalation to a more prominent location in the policy.