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The criminal justice system works on the concept that everyone is entitled to a fair trial, something that is supported by accurate court reporting. But ideally, the courts would be more efficient if there were fewer trials, which means less crime.

One event that is trying to promote better public relationships with the police across the nation is Coffee with a Cop, held Oct. 3 across the nation. Rockville is one city that is participating in Coffee with a Cop, offering two related events, one in late September and one in early October.

On Sept. 29, Rockville residents are invited to an open house to meet the men and women who protect the city, Patch reported. Residents will have a chance to meet police chief Victor Brito, view demonstrations and take guided tours of the Rockville police department’s home in the old post office building.

The open house will include vehicle and equipment displays, a K-9 demonstration, a bounce house, face painting, a DJ, pumpkin decorating, food, information booths and a visit by McGruff the crime dog.

On October 3, which is national Coffee with a Cop day, Rockville police officers will be at the Krispy Kreme donut shop in the Fallsgrove Village Center from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. for informal one-on-one chats with community members, per Patch.

Coffee with a Cop was born in 2011 when Hawthorne, California police officers sought a way to build trust and establish better relationships with local citizens. The key to Coffee with a Cop’s growing success is that it opens the door for interactions outside of the crisis situations that typically bring law enforcement officers and community members together.

Since the start of the program seven years ago, there have been thousands of Coffee with a Cop events in all 50 states and 14 different countries in four languages, according to the Coffee with a Cop website.

The program has expanded outside the Unites States to Canada, Europe, Australia, Africa, and Latin America.

“Coffee with a Cop is simple, effective, and it just plain works. Coffee with a Cop is as ‘grassroots’ as it gets; it brings people together to talk over coffee (or anything else you prefer) with no agenda and no speeches, just open and honest communication,” the website says.

Effective communication is important in the courtroom as well, and that’s why an efficient court reporting system is so crucial.

CourtScribes uses the most sophisticated digital technology to provide the highest-quality transcripts of court proceedings.

The internet-age technology captures what is being said in court, then remote transcriptionists create the official record of court proceedings at a cost to attorneys that is up to 50 percent less than what they are used to paying for live court reporting.

Electronic recording equipment is overseen by an experienced reporter at all times. The reporter simultaneously takes notes that are time-linked to the corresponding recording, so people involved with the case can instantly find the point in the record where they want to re-listen.

Attorneys benefit not only from a less-expensive transcript but also from having a video and/or audio recording that provides them with a more accurate and verifiable record.

CourtScribes may also provide a live feed to an attorney’s office team, allowing them to monitor the proceedings and more effectively assist the attorneys in the courtroom in real time.

Video recording ensures a comprehensive record that allows attorneys to evaluate people’s behaviors, mannerisms, and speech patterns as well as review what was said.  Court Scribes uses computer-based digital systems with enhanced features that perform recording functions with convenience, flexibility, and economy.

In fact, when the CourtScribes technology went head-to-head against a court reporter trained as a stenographer and both transcripts were compared and verified against the actual recording of the proceeding, CourtScribes had significantly fewer errors on each page.

The human ear can only hear so much in a chaotic environment when many speakers in a courtroom talk over each other at the same time. When microphones are placed in front of each speaker, every word spoken can be isolated and heard with complete clarity.

Because the CourtScribes system assigns primary participants to separate, discrete sound channels, it’s easy to identify who’s who. A typical four-channel system individually records the judge, witness, plaintiff’s attorney and defendant’s attorney. When two or more parties talk at the same time, digital reporting captures each voice clearly on its own separate sound channel.

And the recording process captures all words exactly as they are spoken without worrying about a person being unable to understand accents or complex medical or technical terms. During the transcription process, the audio can be replayed as needed to verify any questions.

Also, during the trial, any portion of a recorded proceeding can be played back over audio speakers whenever the judge or counsel requires it.  Audio also can be replayed for jurors if they wish to review actual spoken testimony during deliberations.

Counsel can also obtain copies of the actual recording with digital annotations “hot-linked” to the audio so points of interest can be located quickly and efficiently. While the word per-minute-capacity of a stenographer is often impressive, sometimes it is not enough.