Rebuilding Trust and Strengthening Community Relations: A Sentiment PR Success Story with Farmington Police Department


In the ever-evolving landscape of public relations, the ability to adapt and respond to changing public sentiment is crucial, especially for law enforcement agencies. Sentiment PR, a public relations company specializing in assisting law enforcement agencies, recently worked with the Farmington Police Department (FPD) to address a crisis and restore public trust following a controversial officer-involved shooting.

This white paper details the steps Sentiment PR took to support FPD, the strategies implemented, and the positive outcomes resulting from the collaboration.

Challenges Faced by Farmington Police Department:

The FPD faced a public relations crisis when a tragic officer-involved shooting occurred at the wrong address, resulting in the death of a homeowner. The incident received widespread attention, and the public’s reaction was a mix of anger, sympathy, and confusion. FPD needed to navigate this complex situation, address public concerns, and restore trust within the community.

Sentiment PR’s Involvement and Recommendations:

Sentiment PR began by conducting a comprehensive public sentiment analysis on social media platforms, specifically focusing on comments and reactions to the body cam footage released by FPD. This analysis provided valuable insights into the primary drivers of both negative and positive sentiment.

Armed with this information, Sentiment PR created a detailed communications plan that included the following recommendations:

  1. Maintain transparency by promptly releasing relevant information and addressing public concerns.
  2. Engage in open dialogue with the community to foster understanding and empathy.
  3. Implement social media monitoring and management to track public sentiment and respond to concerns in real-time.
  4. Collaborate with local community leaders and organizations to create forums for discussion and healing.

Farmington Police Department’s Implementation:

FPD embraced Sentiment PR’s recommendations and took the following actions:

  1. Released body cam footage, 911 call audio, and a message from Chief Hebbe, demonstrating transparency and commitment to accountability.
  2. Organized community meetings and town halls to engage in open dialogue with the community.
  3. Utilized geotagged social media monitoring to track public sentiment and address concerns in real-time.
  4. Partnered with local community leaders and organizations to facilitate community healing and bridge-building initiatives.

Positive Outcomes:

As a result of the collaboration with Sentiment PR and the implementation of the recommendations, FPD was able to achieve the following positive outcomes:

  1. A noticeable improvement in public sentiment, with increased understanding and empathy towards the FPD and the challenging situation faced by both officers and the homeowner.
  2. Strengthened relationships between FPD and the community, resulting in a more unified and resilient community.
  3. Increased public trust and credibility, as the department demonstrated its commitment to transparency, accountability, and open communication.


The collaboration between Sentiment PR and the Farmington Police Department showcases the power of strategic communication, public sentiment analysis, and community engagement in rebuilding trust and strengthening relationships. While there is still work to be done, this success story demonstrates the potential for meaningful progress when law enforcement agencies and public relations experts’ work together to address complex challenges.