February 22, 2021
Anaheim Police Chief Jorge Cisneros was the featured speaker at the Rotary Club of Anaheim meeting on February 22, 2021.
Chief Cisneros began his career as a draftsman and assisted in designing Orange County Performing Arts Center. Since joining the police force 30 years ago, Chief Cisneros has been Chief of Huntington Park for 5 years, and the Commander and Chief of Staff in Long Beach before coming to Anaheim in August of 2018. He wakes up smiling because he works in a happy place.
As it is with most of us, family is extremely important to Chief Cisneros. He has been married to his wife (whom he has known since high school) for 28 years. They have two daughters, aged 23 and 19.
The Chief gave a summary of activities over the last year:
Since the death of George Floyd last year, most protests held in Anaheim were peaceful. Only one arrest was made during these demonstrations. George Floyd’s death led to national cries of police training, oversight, and defunding. Not many changes were required by the Anaheim Police Department as it had already worked to increase training and put modifications into place. One change that did need to be put in place the banning the use of karate in criminal apprehension. The use of karate in apprehension was banned by the state governor.
Another change will be that the Anaheim Police Department (APD) will become a member or The Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). Accreditation of law enforcement agencies includes an auditing process to oversee best practices. The accreditation takes time, but has started, and the Department must meet 183 conditions.
Increase in training is being recommended by the Chief. California ordinances require only 32 hours of police training every two years. The Chief noted that High school coaches have more training than law enforcement officers. The recommendation is to increase Officer training to 100 hours per year without additional resources.
The police no longer respond to calls that have no criminal or safety concerns. HUD-funded social workers from CityNet now handle vagrancy and homeless issues. These responders have handled over1200 calls per month since this program began in January 2021. They also respond in an average of 15 minutes as opposed to the APD which can take over 30 minutes. This has relieved the burden from the police and assisted the department tremendously in speeding up responses to more essential calls.
The APD has a budget for 406 police officers of which there are currently 364 in the city. The APD is a very economically run organization and can thoroughly utilize the given technologies and training within their department. Many of these officers are from the Anaheim area and have a pride in their community. Others have been laterally transferred to the region from out of town and bring new abilities and understandings into the department.
Chief Cisneros tells us that the police department is looking at adopting and APD version of the “Anaheim Way”. The Chief is currently working on a document to apply the “Anaheim Way” to APD, to help define the values of the department in writing. This will be useful as communication locally, but also instill clear values to any lateral transfers into the APD.
Thank you, Chief Cisneros for taking time to be with us, and Thank You for your service!
The Child Abuse Prevention Hotline is 800-207-4464 and locally 714-940-1000