John Brockie was promoted Long Beach State police chief in April, and aims to improve the transparency and relatability of campus police.
Brockie served for 22 years at Cal State Fullerton and decided to transfer to CSULB since his two sons attend the university.
The new chief is facing no shortage of troubles from reorganizing, recruiting, and reviewing the structure of the department to taking strides in making officers more approachable and relatable on campus.
“I am the highest ranking person in the police department,” Brockie said “I’m responsible for everything that occurs, whether I know about it or not.”
The semester started with issues for the department when professor Steven Osuna accused officers of racially profiling him.
Osuna had forgotten his ID and keys and asked a campus police officer to come with him to unlock his office, but the officer denied since he could not properly ID Osuna.
The unlock door policy was not changed since 2012 or ’13, and the department saw an opportunity to revise, Brockie said.
The department gave the officers mobile devices for them to access pictures of a faculty or staff members.
“That was an opportunity for us to improve on a policy, and that’s part of being a chief,” said Brockie. “We didn’t make that change because I felt that the officer did anything wrong, we made that change because I felt that we could better serve.”
Brockie said he wants to make the station a welcoming place, by taking off the tint on the station windows.
“Who wants to walk into a police station, that’s already scary for a lot of people, and you can’t see in?” Brockie said. “Hopefully it’s more welcoming, that’s the intent.”
Officers in the department echoed his message of transparency and expressed their confidence in the new police chief.
Lieutenant Carol Almaguer from the CSULB police department said Brockie advocates for his community and wants to change the culture of law enforcement.
“His philosophy within law enforcement is just willingness to change and willingness to be progressive,” Almaguer said. “He’s very insightful and mindful of our community, who we represent, and how we represent ourselves with Cal State Long Beach.”
Officer Liz Herniquez was recruited this year and said Brockie creates a welcoming environment.
“He has an open-door policy, which I love, and it just makes everyone feel comfortable.” Herniquez said.
Brockie wants to keep ensure that students feel comfortable reaching out to them for assistance.
“We want to be part of the educational process, so if students want to go on a ride-along, they want to do an internship we are a resource,” Brockie said.
Brockie has recently opened virtual office hours every Thursday from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. at (562) 985-8536 where anyone can “chat with the chief.”