“Ask The Chief” allows readers access to useful information about law enforcement issues in Red Wing. This communication tool has been developed to enhance community policing efforts by providing residents and visitors with the opportunity to ask questions about local laws, programs and the department in general.

Submit your question to askthe.policechief@ci.red-wing.mn.us.

Q: I think I saw a drug deal between two people at the park but wasn't sure so I decided not to report it. Now I am having second thoughts. What do you think I should have done?

A: I understand your concern, it is normal to feel scared, concerned or even stunned by what you may have just witnessed and may not wish to get involved. However, drugs have become prevalent throughout our nation, and can have devastating effects on individuals, families and our society. Therefore, I would have reported it.

Your first response should be for your personal safety and the next response should be to contact the police. If you feel unsafe, or feel that something dangerous is presently happening, move to a safe area and call 911, or text your message to 911. If you are not in immediate danger, call the non-emergency number at 1-651-385-3155.

Drug activity is often associated with violence and intimidation so I understand that you might want to stay anonymous when reporting this type of activity. Minnesota statutes allow for complainants information to remain anonymous, if you fear possible retaliation, just let the officer taking your report know that you wish to remain anonymous due to possible retaliation. Be prepared to give the exact location of the drug deal, the description of the people and vehicles involved, and describe in detail what you witness.

If police response is not needed immediately. or to provide possible information related to a case, you can report anonymously to Crime Stoppers Minnesota online at www.crimestoppersmn.org or call 800-222-8477. To further protect your neighborhood, you may also wish to establish a Neighborhood Watch program. For information on Neighborhood Watch, please contact community service officer Tim Bohmbach at 651-267-2609.

References and resources:

1. Minnesota Statute 13.83 Comprehensive Law Enforcement Data, located online at: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/13.82

2. Crime Stoppers: 1-800-222-8477 http://www.crimestoppersmn.org/sitemenu.aspx?ID=674&

3. Neighborhood Watch: https://www.nnw.org/