Meridian Township Police stated today that they will be making changes to the way the department investigates sexual assault claims. The department is also going to look back over the last 18 years of investigations.
Erin Roberts at End Violent Encounters (EVE), tells FOX 47 that Meridian Township Police have done a great service to the survivors and the community by admitting they were wrong and apologizing for it. She says improving their investigations will help hold the right people accountable.
"Apologies go a long way, transparency goes a long way," said Roberts.
Roberts praised Meridian Township both for the procedural changes it's making and for the apology to Brianne Randall-Gay. She told FOX 47 if more organizations admit their mistakes it could convince more survivors to come forward and start to heal.
"When you realize you're not alone and you have other people that have had similar experiences It will encourage people to come forward," said Roberts.
The changes include annual in-depth instruction in how to investigate criminal sexual conduct cases and teaching officers and detectives how to address survivors and their needs. The department is also asking Randall-Gay to make a video telling her story to be used for training.
Roberts feels empowering her and other survivors will make it easier for police to put predators away.
"Those are the true voices that will lead us into a better society and handleing situations like this," said Roberts.
Meridian Township Police plan to start the new training in March. The department hasn't said how long it will take to implement.