Acosta to promote positive community, police relationship
by Martha Quetsch
MAPLE PARKâ€”Michael Acosta was sworn in as Maple Park’s new police chief during Tuesday’s Village Board meeting. The former Kane County Sheriff’s Department officer is looking forward to building a positive relationship with village officials, police officers and residents.
â€œIt’s a three-pronged wheel,â€ Acosta said.
Acosta said he will work with the Village Board on the Police Department budget, and on policies and procedures. Among his goals is to add more officers to his squad.
Acosta acknowledged that building the department will be a process.
â€œBaby steps,â€ he said.
Acosta now oversees a department of five part-time Maple Park police officers. He plans to use his past experience in law enforcement to be a mentor to them, particularly to his younger officers.
Within the community, Acosta wants residents, especially children, to know that he and his officers are approachable and accessible. With that in mind, he plans to start several programs as soon as possible. One is a police-hosted movie night at the Community Center, complete with popcorn. Another is Storytime with a Cop at the Maple Park Library.
In addition, Acosta said he will offer a monthly forum that village residents can attend to voice concerns or bring neighborhood issues to his attention.
â€œI won’t always know what needs addressing unless I have this type of contact with residents,â€ Acosta said.
During the past week, Acosta stopped by at businesses in the village to introduce himself.
â€œI told them that they could call me at any time,â€ he said.
Maple Park’s new police chief, Michael Acosta, retired from the Kane County Sheriff’s Department in 2007. During his 31 years with the Sheriff’s Department, he served as Commander of Administration, and Commander of Kane County Major Crimes Task Force. Acosta serves on the Sugar Grove Police Commission.
Maple Park Police Department operated without an officer in charge since officer Chuck Slater’s resignation in September. Slater had been officer in charge since June 2008, when village officials decided against renewing former Chief Steve Yahnke’s contract.