SOCIAL FAUX PAS: If you're up to no good in this pocket of northeast Ohio, you're risking not only jail time or a fine but a swifter repercussion with a much larger audience: You're in for a social media scolding from police Chief David Oliver and some of his small department's 49,000 Facebook fans.
RUNNING THE GAMUT: In postings interspersed with community messages and rants, the Brimfield Township chief takes to task criminals and other ne'er-do-wells — his preferred term is "mopes," appropriated from police TV shows and an old colleague who used it — for the stupid, the lazy and the outright unlawful. Parking illegally in a space reserved for the handicapped can also spur a Facebook flogging.
JURY STILL OUT: Oliver's 15-person department handles more than 13,000 calls for service annually and deals largely with arrests for driving violations, thefts and drug crimes by out-of-towners. Arrests in those crime categories dropped last year but are trending upward again, and Oliver says it would take more time to determine whether the Facebook messages are having an impact.
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