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Olszewski, Hyatt to join Baltimore County’s equitable policing advisory group Tuesday

Baltimore County’s equitable policing work group is set to meet virtually Tuesday after it was established by Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski Jr. in mid-June.

Olszewski will join the meeting, which will be streamed online starting at 3 p.m. via Webex. Police Chief Melissa Hyatt and Momen Abukhdeir, the county’s chief data officer, also are scheduled to speak, according to the meeting agenda.

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Both are expected to discuss the county’s new crime data dashboard, which was announced on Friday. Olszewski has said the county also plans to release information about complaints against police officers, use of force and traffic stop data broken down by race.

County police Col. Robert McCullough and John Skinner, former deputy police commissioner of Baltimore City Police and a criminal justice professor at Towson University, also will present on community policing and training.

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The advisory group was established in December as a temporary work group to examine racial disparities in traffic stop data after it was found that a majority of drivers pulled over by county police were Black, despite accounting for 30% of the county’s population.

The now-permanent group, chaired by Troy Williams, who was hired as the county’s first chief diversity officer last year, was due to release a final report by this month, before the schedule was upended by the coronavirus pandemic.

Hyatt is also an ex-officio group member.

The traffic stop analysis will be included in a report the county says will be released later this year. That report will focus on a broad range of issues surrounding policing practices and proposed reforms.

The traffic stop group has met eight times and has held community input sessions through Webex.

An agenda for the Aug. 11 meeting can be found online.

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