KCPD traffic officers volunteer for death notifications in effort to reduce fatalities

Jim Cunningham
January 05, 2018 - 6:58 am

In the summer of 2017 Kansas City's Morning News broadcast a series of stories about one of the most difficult assignments for police officers, notifying family members about deaths. 

Now some officers with the Kansas City Police Department are asking to go along and experience the devastatingly emotional notifications.

In 28 years as a police officer in Kansas City, Giuseppe Trombino had never made a death notification. His first came months ago when he had to tell a couple their son had been killed in a crash, which left the father in shock.

"(He) couldn't speak -- couldn't move anymore," Trombino said. "The mom had just collapsed to her knees."

Trombino was motivated to meet with his supervisor to set up a program in which he and his fellow traffic enforcement officers could use the experience to help them in their effort to reduce fatal accidents. There were 98 traffic fatalities in Kansas City in 2017.

"This will be an experience that I think every traffic enforcement officer should have, and do just once, to kind of complete that puzzle, to see that last piece, to see what happens, why it is we're actually up on an overpass on these areas where there's a lot of vehiculars occurring," Trombino said.

Trombino hopes he makes a small difference every time he stops a vehicle or writes a ticket. The idea, he said, is to prevent people from becoming a part of Kansas City's sad traffic fatality statistics. 

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