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Burbank PD gets a new voice

Ben Godar

The voice of the Burbank Police Department is changing.

Sgt. Bruce Speirs took over as the agency’s public information

officer last week and wants to make sure the department is looked


upon as a community resource.

“In the old days, if it wasn’t in the vehicle code or the penal

code, it wasn’t considered a police problem,” Speirs said. “That’s an

antiquated attitude.”


Speirs replaced Lt. John Dilibert, who was promoted and serves as

one of the department’s watch commanders, overseeing traffic


In addition to spending six years as a helicopter pilot, Speirs

has worked as a training officer and in the patrol bureau, which

coordinates officers in the field, during his 28-year career with the

Burbank Police.

One of Speirs’ biggest concerns about his new post is making sure


the department does everything it can to help citizens in need, even

if it means referring them to other departments within the city.

“We always get the phone calls, but we need to deliver options to

people who may not be facing a straight law-enforcement problem,” he


As public information officer, Speirs is responsible for relaying

information from detectives about investigations to the public, as

well as speaking on behalf of the department to the media. He also


coordinates certain events between the department and other

organizations in the community.

A lifelong Burbank resident, the 47-year-old said he wants to

maintain the positive relationship between the department and the

community. He said part of continuing that trust is keeping the

public informed about what’s going on inside the department.

“Other than the police chief, this is really the only other outlet

for the voice of the department,” he said.

Speirs’ strong ties to the community are what Dilibert said will

make him an excellent public information officer.

“He understands what the citizens are dealing with because he

lives in town,” Dilibert said. “He knows who to go to in order to get

problems solved.”

The police call-in show that Dilibert has hosted will continue,

with Dilibert, Speirs, Community Service Officer Vee Jones and others

sharing hosting duties.