Sandy Springs police increasing Latino outreach

Sandy Springs police are beefing up outreach to the city's growing Hispanic community.

The police department last week hosted a meeting involving the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, public safety media spokespeople and Atlanta-based international reporters from several media agencies, including Telemundo and Univision.

Representatives from those agencies told police that many Spanish-speakers were missing out on police updates on such things as breaking crime news, searches for missing children and adults and traffic law changes. Sandy Springs Police Sgt. Forrest Bohannon said that as a result, the city will now translate all announcements on its Facebook page into Spanish. The change went into effect Tuesday.

Bohannon said other possible changes being weighed include having Spanish-speaking officers conduct community outreach meetings in Spanish as well as English. No timeline has been set for that, she indicated.