Senior Hispanic Officer Thinks Connection Between Police and Pas - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Senior Hispanic Officer Thinks Connection Between Police and Pasco Community is Strong

Posted: Updated:
PASCO, WA. -- After last month's officer involved shooting in Pasco, many people around the country have used Pasco as an example of a place where the policing system may be broken.


Sergeant Rigo Pruneda is an 11-year veteran of the Pasco Police Department. He's the most senior Hispanic officer on the police force and he says working the streets of Pasco everyday, he knows the community and he doesn't see any type of racial divide at all. 


Pasco Police Sergeant Rigo Pruneda says it's his upbringing that helps him to connect with Pasco's Hispanic community. 


"My father was born and raised in mexico," Sgt. Pruneda said. "He came to the United States for the American dream."


Sergeant Pruneda was the supervising officer on February 10th, the night Antonio Zambrano was shot. He still remembers hearing the stress in the officers voices when they called for backup.


"You could hear that in their voice over the radio, that's when I knew something was going to be a little bit different," Sgt. Pruneda said. 


Sergeant Pruneda has been patrolling the same part of downtown Pasco for 11 years, a community he says he loves.


For many, it's easy to look at the hundreds of protesters after the shooting and say the community of Pasco is divided. Officer Pruneda strongly disagrees.


"I see people that are stopping me in the middle of road, shaking my hand, giving me a hug," Sgt. Pruneda said. "I see the countless cookies coming into the department, hundreds of cards coming from everywhere in the Tri-Cities. So when someone says that there is not a good relationship there, that bothers me because I'm here every day. I do it everyday, day in and day out, and I know that that's not to be true, that's not true."


The shooting has thrust the City of Pasco, and more specifically the Pasco Police Department into the center of an on-going national conversation. While it threatened to divide us, Sergeant Pruneda believes it will actually bring the community he knows and loves, closer. 


"The city is more than that," Sgt. Pruneda said. "We're more than that, the department is more than that. We're a good city that works together and we're going to past it. And we're going to be better for it."


It's important to note with this story that protesters of the shooting have repeatedly said that they are not protesting against the Pasco Police Department but the recent use of force by police departments across the country. 

HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Tri-CitiesTri-Cities NewsMore>>

  • Dogs can catch the human flu

    Dogs can catch the human flu

    Saturday, January 20 2018 10:10 PM EST2018-01-21 03:10:54 GMT
    HEALTH ALERT-   Flu season is upon us and even when you're careful there's one thing you may not have thought carried the flu virus According to Veterinarians dogs can catch the human flu. They may not experience symptoms but they can spread it to other dogs and humans.  Unfortunately, there is currently no way to test if your dog is contagious.  But if someone has the flu they says its important that they be mindful of taking their dogs out and about such as to...More >>
    HEALTH ALERT-   Flu season is upon us and even when you're careful there's one thing you may not have thought carried the flu virus According to Veterinarians dogs can catch the human flu. They may not experience symptoms but they can spread it to other dogs and humans.  Unfortunately, there is currently no way to test if your dog is contagious.  But if someone has the flu they says its important that they be mindful of taking their dogs out and about such as to...More >>
  • Inmate found dead in cell at Benton County Jail

    Inmate found dead in cell at Benton County Jail

    Saturday, January 20 2018 10:06 PM EST2018-01-21 03:06:15 GMT
    Kennewick Man Sentenced to Thirty Years Imprisonment for Production of Child PornographyKennewick Man Sentenced to Thirty Years Imprisonment for Production of Child Pornography
    KENNEWICK- The Benton County Sheriff's Office and the Special Investigative Unit (SIU) are currently investigating the death of an inmate on Saturday morning.  On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. the Richland Police Department arrived at the jail following the arrest of a 28-year-old male for Possession of Methamphetamine and an outstanding Kennewick warrant for theft. Upon completing the booking process, which includes a medical, mental health, and suicidal screening, no indications ...More >>
    KENNEWICK- The Benton County Sheriff's Office and the Special Investigative Unit (SIU) are currently investigating the death of an inmate on Saturday morning.  On Thursday at 7:30 p.m. the Richland Police Department arrived at the jail following the arrest of a 28-year-old male for Possession of Methamphetamine and an outstanding Kennewick warrant for theft. Upon completing the booking process, which includes a medical, mental health, and suicidal screening, no indications ...More >>
  • Polar Plunge raises thousands of dollars for Special Olympics

    Polar Plunge raises thousands of dollars for Special Olympics

    Saturday, January 20 2018 8:04 PM EST2018-01-21 01:04:52 GMT
    RICHLAND, WA.-- On Saturday, dozens of people braved the icy Columbia for 12th Annual Polar Plunge, which raises money for the Special Olympics. This year, the event was held at the Columbia Park Marina, and 292 people decided to make a splash! If you thought that number was big, how about this: as of this morning, the event raised over $55,000, which will help the 17,500 Special Olympics athletes across the state of Washington.  If you didn't get a chance to head out to t...More >>
    RICHLAND, WA.-- On Saturday, dozens of people braved the icy Columbia for 12th Annual Polar Plunge, which raises money for the Special Olympics. This year, the event was held at the Columbia Park Marina, and 292 people decided to make a splash! If you thought that number was big, how about this: as of this morning, the event raised over $55,000, which will help the 17,500 Special Olympics athletes across the state of Washington.  If you didn't get a chance to head out to t...More >>