ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Come December 7, the Anne Arundel County Police Department will make history if the county council approves the appointment of Chief Amal Awad as the county’s next top cop.

Awad, who currently leads the Hyattsville Police Department, has decades of law enforcement experience, including in Anne Arundel County.

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The county is looking to appointing a new permanent police chief amid nationwide calls for police reform. Awad told WJZ’s Vic Carter that process begins with people talking to each other.

“I think it’s important for us to listen to one another. I’ve been involved in conversations and sometimes I don’t feel like my voice is heard as a police chief, as a police officer,” she said. “Sometimes I think folks enter a conversation with their beliefs and there’s nothing you’re going to say that is going to change their minds. I’m human just like you, I live in a community just like you that I care about. I walk out the door every day just like you, sometimes in a uniform, sometimes not.”

“Sure, I have concerns, especially after seeing George Floyd killed the way he was killed,” she continued, “and I know we have to have conversations about what’s an appropriate response, police response with regard to use of force.”

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When asked what she wants county residents to know about her, Awad responded that she polices from her heart and expects officers and community members to treat each other with dignity and respect.

Awad would also be the first Black woman to serve as the county’s police chief and the first woman to hold the job permanently. When asked about the milestone, she said she understands the magnitude of the position.

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She also has a passion for young people, she said, and wants to explore ways of helping them while also improving relationships between them and police officers.

Vic Carter