Coatesville, Pa. (WTXF) - A local woman developed a magnetic pouch to hold your license and other documents in sight in hopes of making police and the community safer during traffic stops. Some police departments are giving them away.
Whether or not people want to talk about it or acknowledge it, division between police and some communities exists.
“In 2016, when we started having all of the issues with people being stopped by the cops and a few people who were killed as a result of it just bothered me.”
Her hope was that we could get past the immediate and emotional response of digging in and assigning blame and find a way to work together to try to come up with some sort of solution.
“What is it that makes police officers nervous during traffic stops? Reaching and that’s why we just simply named the product 'Not Reaching.'”
'Not Reaching' was developed by a Coatesville court worker now living in DC. She wanted to take on the huge issue of community police relations and after speaking to both she found that hands on the steering wheel during traffic stops made everyone more comfortable as Coatesville Officer Sgt Rodger Ollis explained.
“She sent a sample and I looked at it and spoke to other officers and we felt it would be a good idea to make our community members aware that we have this product available free of charge.”
Jackie’s role was creating the product and giving it to police stations but the police had to acknowledge it was an issue and be willing to distribute them. Something that Sgt. Ollis said Coatesville and several others across the region are now trying.
“I just see it as a great opportunity to keep hands where we can see them and it’s a product developed by a Coatesville resident who cares and wants the best for our community and our officers.”
Unfortunately, as open as Jackie and the police have been to the concept a look at social media showed many picking sides and questioning whether there should even be a need for this product. But a youth worker, Troy Carter, said picking sides is really missing the point.
“Anything that’s gonna save a life or keep a life from being put in jeopardy on either side is a great thing.”
The issue, the division isn’t solved by a product but it has brought people to the table to further discuss it and may save some lives in the process for goodness sake.