HIGH POINT, N.C. (WGHP) — High Point Police Chief Travis Stroud spoke on the importance of building a bond with the community and keeping violent crimes on a downward trend during a discussion panel at the “State of the City” event.

The event was hosted by the Business High Point Chamber of Commerce as a chance for leaders in the community to inform and educate the people living in High Point.

Stroud spoke about the importance of building trust with the community and focusing on keeping the violent crimes down with the community members’ help.

“I do think if you establish that relationship and…guess what’s going to happen…it’s going to drive down,” said Chief Stroud.

He also echoed preventing school shootings in the city and plans for the department to train over the next year to be prepared in case something should happen.

“We’re taking a lot of extra efforts and clearing out our training calendar for the year to focus on active shooter events not just in schools but events like furniture market,” Stroud said.

Despite the need for more officers in the department, Stroud said crime has been on a downward trend.

“We have watched our violent stats take a dip from 1997 until now. That’s exactly what we want to see,” Stroud said.

During the panel on Tuesday, Stroud also spoke about being a part of the community and building trust with people that live in the city.

“I firmly believe this: your community engagement efforts should be almost neck and neck with that crime-fighting effort,” Stroud said.

He said several community programs that are in the works and others that have started recently are ways that they can further bridge the gap in the community.

“You see police, and you just see the things that pop up on the news. You don’t get to hear about these things, but we’re making efforts to do better,” Stroud said.