MOUNT VERNON — The Mount Vernon Police Department now has a new police chaplaincy program.
Sgt. Andy Burns spoke with a prayer group that meets in the Knox County Common Pleas courtroom every Friday about the program. Mount Vernon Association of Police Chaplains had been a topic of discussion for the last few years, according to Burns, but was expedited following a February shooting which resulted the in deaths of two Westerville police officers.
The program was set up as a 501c3, not-for-profit organization, separate from the police department and is housed in the Escape Zone. The chaplains are local Christian religious leaders from area churches that have undergone some training through the police training academy. They respond to calls with MVPD officers and are meant to be there to offer comfort.