Law enforcement meets with Asian community

By Laura Geller - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The cultural barriers are many but no matter what language you speak or country you come from, there's no denying danger has come to Asian American businesses. In recent months we've told you about three attacks on Chinese food delivery drivers, two of them turned deadly.

"Each individual works hard for our living. They work hard. It's just so hard when you think about innocent people getting killed," said Ji Hong Xing, concerned business owner.

That violence was the motivation for Monday's meeting-- all five major jurisdictions-- from the city to Hanover County say they need to bridge the cultural gaps to gain trust.

"I would venture to say that that's one of the impasses that we all have, that we don't know each other by first name and we don't see each other often enough," said Richmond Police Department Chief Bryan Norwood.

Police are going to help this community understand how the departments work, who to call, and what kinds of precautions will help keep workers safe. For their part, businesses will help law enforcement communicate with Asian Americans, understand the cultures and most importantly spread the message- police can be trusted.

"If we merge together, we work together, hand in hand, then you're going to send a strong signal out to the public-that criminals, don't mess with the Asians," said Tinh Duc Phan, Virginia Asian Chamber of Commerce.

Police say that message is critical because every robbery is just one trigger pull away from another homicide. If you want to talk to officers at your business, call your local police department.

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