STOCKTON -- Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva announced Thursday on Facebook that he’s creating a citizens police review board.
"If you look at cities that are much larger than Stockton -- San Diego, Oakland, you name it, they already have this," the mayor said.
Silva says the committee would be made of up nine Stockton residents and would investigate anything from police shootings to claims against the city, and then make recommendations to the city manager.
Oakland has had a citizens police review board for the last three decades, but critics say it’s understaffed and its recommendations are often ignored by city officials.
"We all work for the residents of Stockton. I work for them, the city council works for them, the police department works for them. So this is their city. So they should have a say," he said.
Silva believes if citizens have some say when it comes to incidents involving police, it would improve relations between officers and those who've lost their trust in law enforcement.
"It's been a rough season for the country, as far as police relations. Now that things have calmed down a little across the nation, it's the right time for Stockton, California, to have some transparency, get the public involved and really being proud of their police department," Silva said.
Silva said he’s still in the planning phase, and if he’s re-elected in November, he said he will ask the city council to officially adopt the committee.
He believes the nine-member panel would also help solve many of the city's unsolved homicides.
"Sometimes people are more comfortable with coming out and telling a neutral group of people about information they may have, that may lead to the arrest of a homicide suspect. They may not want to share that with the police department," Silva said.