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Cops, coffee, and conversation with South Bend Police

Cops, coffee and conversation. It's what South Bend Police call their attempt to reach out to the community they serve, at a time in our nation when people need extra assurance that they are protected.

It was great for the community to see a room packed with about 100 of South Bend's finest, there to answer any and all questions.

One officer said he just wants people to realize behind their uniforms, they're human, too.

“There are going to be calls that we go to that remind us of our wives, of our children,” says Officer Jose Capeles with South Bend Police.

Capeles has been an officer for 10 years but he's also a husband and a father.

So, when he puts on his uniform, he knows it could be the last day he sees his family.

He's happy to be part of a discussion with community members about issues in their neighborhood.

“Instead of a reactive, it's a proactive approach to dealing with problems in their locations,” says Officer Capeles.

He hopes these conversations are also a chance for residents to see the man behind the badge.

“It was very interesting,” says Mary Aragon about the open forum.

Aragon has lived in South Bend all her life and is no stranger to crime.

She says she's experienced shootings and burglary.

But Aragon says she think South Bend officers do a good job protecting her and her family.

Officers say this was the first open forum they've had in years and they hope to have many more in the future.
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