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One Kansas City Police Officer’s Take On Police-Community Relations In KC


Amidst rising tensions between law enforcement and communities of color across the nation, Black Lives Matter supporters joined forces with the Wichita Police for a cookout last weekend. What was originally planned as a protest turned into a picnic, where over 1,000 community members came together for food and dance.

“It wasn’t about officers dancing, it wasn’t about the food, it was about the issues we’re trying to address within this community,” Wichita community organizer AJ Bohannon said. “It was really genuinely only the first step in a long journey ahead of us.”

AJ Bohannon, community organizer and activist in Wichita, hugs a fellow community member at the First Steps Cookout at McAdams Park last weekend.

Here in Kansas City, Chato Villalobos, a Latino officer with the KCPD, hopes that Kansas City can start, and continue to have that same conversation.

“Not just talk, but action plans,” Villalobos told host Matthew Long-Middleton on KCUR’s Central Standard. “We have a long ways to go.”

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