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APD working to deter youth arrests

The Albany Police Department is working to keep kids out of the legal system.
The Albany Police Department is working to keep kids out of the legal system.(WALB)
Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 6:20 PM EDT
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ALBANY, Ga. (WALB) - The Albany Police Department is working to keep kids out of the legal system. For those who may have already been charged and arrested for a crime, they’re working to change their mindset and actions.

Dr. Tamrya D. Brown works in the family protection unit at the Albany Police Department. Seeing the need to help the youth of Albany change direction from violence to a better path, she created the youth leadership and development academy.

″If we can get our children to stop, pause, and think before they act, I think they’ll have better outcomes,” said Brown.

During the program, the youth sit down with a therapist and use the time to talk.

“It’s pretty much a dumping ground for them to dump whatever it is they’re going through. We’re trying to treat the thoughts because the way that you treat the behavior, you first have to treat the thoughts. Try to teach them impulse control. That’s the first thing because they act out of how they feel,” said Brown.

Dr. Tamrya D. Brown works in the family protection unit at the Albany Police Department. Seeing...
Dr. Tamrya D. Brown works in the family protection unit at the Albany Police Department. Seeing the need to help the youth of Albany change direction from violence to a better path, she created the youth leadership and development academy.(WALB)

Helping kids ranging from as young as 10 to 19, Brown said they help to encourage kids to surround themselves with good people, go to school and not become a product of their environment.

“We do stress it is your responsibility to make a change because you were born in the environment. You don’t have to follow the negative trends,” said Brown.

She said not in every case, but in most, kids make bad decisions because they are in survival mode.

“We see it stems from a lack of something at the house and they go and develop associations. A lot of them are parents for their smaller children, so they don’t only have to feed me, I have to feed my little brothers and sisters so it’s a lot of pressure on them,” said Brown.

This program started back in 2019. Each year, they help around six to 10 kids through multiple sessions.

“If we just save one, we’ve done a lot because you’re not going to get all of them,” said Brown.

With the course being funded through a state grant, Brown said their biggest limitation is funding.

There are open spots in the program. If you think your child could benefit from a program like this, call (229) 431-2100.

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