Chief Tusken Reflects On Police Department Assessment Report

DULUTH, Minn. – A top to bottom outside assessment of the Duluth Police Department is now complete. And Chief Mike Tusken says he’s pleased that the recommendations for improvements were nothing overly unexpected.

Tusken says one of the strengths highlighted in the report applauds the department’s mental health unit as innovative and progressive.

On the flip side, the report concluded the department needs to improve in-custody reports to eliminate prosecution delays, and in some cases the release of offenders prior to being arraigned in court.

Chief Tusken says improvements are already in the works with a new records management system being launched this summer.

“I’ll have the ability to turn it on an see what happened overnight, what crimes are up, what crimes are down, what responses are effective.  What responses we need to reevaluate and change,” Tusken said.

Improving internal communication is another recommendation within the 24-hour police department operation.

Chief Tusken has since created weekly short video clips for his officers and staff to help be on the same page.

“We’re just being more intentional about asking the question who else in our organization needs to know this or should know this. It just takes effort, really, to not assume that your people know when they are working in an environment where they are coming and going at all hours of the day and night,” Tusken said.

Click here for the full 400-page department assessment.

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