TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — As construction continues on the future Terre Haute Police Department headquarters, a U. S. Senator toured the new building.
Senator Todd Young of Indiana visited Terre Haute as Police Appreciation week approaches. With conversations regarding police reform continuing nationally and in the state of Indiana, Senator Young said the new headquarters will add value to the community.
“You can’t have a growing economy, you can’t have a vibrant society, you can’t educate your children, and live in peace if you don’t have a strong and supported law enforcement community. They’re essential to everything,” Young said.
Terre Haute Police Department Chief Shawn Keen says, the building design will help strengthen ties between law enforcement and citizens.
“This is going to be a good starting point to even further that our level of professionalism and that’s what I’m looking at with this building. It’s going to be more open to the public, it’s going to be more conducive to customer service when they walk through those doors,” Keen said. “And, hopefully we’ll be able to show you that here in a few months. But, we think it’s going to be a lot for the community,”
Keen added the appearance of any police headquarter in their respective community is an important factor to consider in terms of professionalism.
As proposed police reform legislation continues to circulate, Young acknowledges the importance of keeping all police officers accountable. Young said he is against the idea of defunding the police and removing qualified immunity.
T.H.P.D. has more protocols in place, including the use of body cameras and de-escalation training.
Keen says he appreciates the Senator taking time tour the new facility and discuss topics like police reform.
” I think we get forgotten in that, and I appreciate that he came out and actually listened to our perspective on some of the issues that we’re facing as a community. I think that was important. It means a lot to our officers,” Keen said.
August is the projected completion date for the project.