Joplin's Next Chief of Police Prepares to Take Over Operations

By Gretchen Bolander

Published 01/23 2014 05:46PM

Updated 01/23 2014 06:55PM

JOPLIN, MO.--- Joplin's next chief of police is getting ready to take over operations. Jason Burns says as police chief, he wants to put a stronger emphasis on technology. He also plans to continue the department's commitment to community service and transparency.

"Being the first internal chief in a number of years tells me we've been going in the right direction. As the operational commander of the department for the last six years, I take great pride in that," said Jason Burns, Next JPD Chief. 

The Joplin Police Department's next police chief also doesn't want to see the department stagnate. He wants to build on what's already successful. In the last seven years, the department has added 30 extra officers, which he says has helped decreased crime by 26% as well as make significant reductions in traffic crashes.

"I think we're seeing the benefits of that about to run out. So the focus needs to change on crime analysis using technology to determine where crime is going to occur and utilize our assets better and being there when it does," said Burns. 

He's also wants to continue JPD's commitment to community involvement.

"Telling people how they can harden the target and not become a victim," said Burns. 

Above all, he wants to make sure he's making Joplin safe.

"That's what the community wants from our department. We want less accidents and live in a safer environment. I certainly want to give them that," said Burns. 

Burns has been in law enforcement in Southwest Missouri for 21 years, three years at the Jasper County Sheriff's Department and 18 with JPD. He points out in that time, he's worked with five officers who would go on to be local police chiefs, which he believes says a lot about the quality of the police force in Joplin.

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