Boynton community meeting serves as place to get to know the police

Boynton Beach Police Chief Jeffrey Katz at the FBI Academy in Virginia. Photo handout: Katz

Boynton Beach Police Chief Jeffrey Katz at the FBI Academy in Virginia. Photo handout: Katz

At the last police Town Hall meeting of the year, the Boynton Beach residents spoke one-on-one with eight police officers, of all different ranks, and learned a little bit about them as people, and not just law enforcement officials.

The Town Hall meetings are hosted by Police Chief Jeffrey Katz and are held quarterly at locations throughout the city. This past Thursday’s meeting, held at Palm Beach Leisureville, was the final one of 2016.

The group probably expected to hear official statements and statistics from the officers, but that’s far from what they actually got. And it was clear they enjoyed it.

To read the latest headlines from Boynton Beach, go to palmbeachpost.com/boynton

Here’s some examples of what the group shared.

-Sgt. Daniel Dugger. His astrology sign is Cancer, and he is sensitive. Yes. That’s how it started. He might have told the group that he’s sensitive because he was the first one to speak and didn’t know how tough the crowd would be. He also told the group about his family, and that one of his toddler sons is a little bit of a terror.

-Officer Evan Esteves shared that he was born in Queens, which as you could imagine, received some cheers. He’s also a Baltimore Ravens fan.

-Capt. Anthony Magnanti was a little more serious, and gave the chief credit for “quite the transformation” in the police department.

-Officer Jivanet Rivera told the group about why she picked Boynton. It’s the department’s emphasis on community outreach that got her. She said she likes to catch the bad guys, of course, and likes partnering with the community, also.

-Capt. John Bonafair said he likes that the Boynton community always waves and says hello to him. He also told the group that he has a cat.

The crowd appeared to enjoy getting to know the officers. And Katz told the group how proud he is of them.

“Our officers are remarkable,” he said.

Facebook users, follow postonboynton for the latest news and updates