DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – On the night Officer Jason Raynor was shot in the head back in June by a suspect with alleged ties to a Black nationalist militia group, Daytona Beach Police Chief Jakari Young said he was “heartbroken.”
“I’m extremely heartbroken,” Young said. “We work extremely hard to try to change the narrative so that we do not have the issues that you see in other areas of the country as it pertains to law enforcement and the communities that we serve.”
News 6 reported on Young’s efforts to “change the narrative” when he first took over at the end of 2020 and had to combat a rash of shooting violence.
Since then, all officers have been parking their patrol cars, walking through neighborhoods and apartment complexes, and talking to people every day on every shift. Young said it was the most effective policing tool he has and generates leads.
Young has brought the ice cream truck to several community events, and officers engage in impromptu basketball pick-up games with kids.
“You’re not going to find too many of my police cars that don’t have a bag of toys in the trunk to hand out to kids as we respond to calls for service, because that’s what we believe in,” Young said.
And Young has promised his officers will keep doing what they’re doing.
“I want to assure my residents, the residents of this city, that even though we are hurt, and even though we are heartbroken, if you need us, we will be there,” Young said.