MIDDLETOWN, Pa. – Penn State Harrisburg’s School of Public Affairs will present a panel discussion titled "Ambidexterity: Supporting the police while seeking reforms" from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 10 via Zoom. The discussion will focus on the national debate on policing and policing reforms.
Moderated by Jonathan Lee, associate professor of criminal justice, the discussion will include minority members of law enforcement who will share their experiences, ongoing efforts to improve police relations with youth, and best practices in use of force.
The panel will include:
- Jonathan Lee, associate professor of criminal justice (moderator) – Lee specializes in quantitative research on crime and police behavior and is associate editor of the International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology. He is also a project consultant to county District Attorney's offices and municipal police departments in Pennsylvania, while serving as a principal investigator of multiple crime prevention projects funded by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. Prior to entering academe, Prior to entering academe, he was an Army intelligence officer and worked as a business negotiator. Lee holds a bachelor's degree in economics and master's and doctoral degrees in criminal justice.
- Sergeant Juan Castro, patrol division/supervisor, Penn State University Central District (panelist) – Castro currently holds the rank of sergeant with Penn State University Police and Public Safety, where he has served since 2014. In his current role, he helps execute the overall strategic vision of University Police and Public Safety, in accordance with the overall mission and goals of the University. He serves as a member of multiple leadership teams and committees, including the Presidential Student Code of Conduct Taskforce, the Behavioral Threat Management Team, and the Council on Race, Ethnicity, and Diversity. Castro has served as an emergency responder for 24 years in the areas of emergency medical services and law enforcement. He has worked in various communities within the United States under different roles such as a field training officer, homeland security specialist, gang resource officer, criminal investigations, and leadership. Castro earned his master's degree in homeland security from Penn State, is an FBI-LEEDA Trilogy Award recipient, and has various professional trainings, including internal affairs, operational best practices, and use of force instruction. Castro began his career in public service working EMS in urban and suburban communities. He also has served in the Las Vegas Valley where he worked as a police officer.
- Lieutenant Milo G. Hooper, specialty services commander, Harrisburg Bureau of Police (Panelist) – Hooper was promoted to his current rank in 2017 when he became unit commander of the Uniform Patrol Division's 3rd Platoon. He continued in this position until 2020 when he assumed command of the newly-formed Specialty Services Unit. Hooper joined the Harrisburg Bureau of Police in 1996 as a Patrol Officer assigned to the Uniform Patrol Division. In 1997, he moved to the Office of the Chief, where his assignments included the Public Housing Unit, Community Policing Power Shift Unit, US Marshals Fugitive Task Force, and the Harrisburg Police Street Crimes Unit. Hooper has received numerous commendations throughout his career, including three Officer of the Year awards. Hooper received his bachelor of science degree in economics from Penn State in 1992.
- Everette Penn, professor of criminology and director of Teen And Police Service Academy Program, University of Houston-Clear Lake (Panelist) – Penn applies theory to practice through programming, research, teaching and training to reduce the social distance between the most at-risk/at-promise youth and police in the United States and abroad. He is the author of over 75 scholarly works, a former Volunteer In Service to America (VISTA), Fulbright Scholar and U.S. Army Officer. He is a certified master police trainer, and the recipient of dozens of awards from governmental agencies, academic and civic organizations. More about Penn and the TAPS Academy can be found at tapsacademy.org.
The event is free and open to the public. It is supported by the Penn State Harrisburg Diversity and Educational Equity Committee. Register online to attend. For more information, contact Jonathan Lee at [email protected].