Darnell Blackburn

Crime and Safety Expert

Former Police Officer Darnell Blackburn joined WDIV-Local 4 in December 2022 as the station’s Crime and Safety Expert on all platforms -- Local 4 News on television, the station website clickondetroit.com, and on the station’s streaming channel Local 4+. Blackburn provides in-depth analysis as part of the station’s approach to its crime reporting to help viewers better understand what is important and how to keep themselves, their families, and friends safe from becoming a victim of crime.

Blackburn is also part of the team of on-air traffic reporters for the station’s Timesaver Traffic segments during morning news weekdays from 4:30 a.m. until 8 a.m.

Blackburn is a veteran of law enforcement with more than 27 years’ experience. He worked as a police officer at Michigan State University and served in the Auburn Hills Police Department where he worked road patrol, community policing, narcotics, and other special assignments. He has also been instrumental in the education of police throughout Southeast Michigan working for more than 15 years with the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES), the regulatory agency for all law enforcement in Michigan. There he helped oversee and develop the training and standards curriculum for all of Michigan’s law enforcement officers.  He is also an adjunct professor at Macomb Community College where he teaches courses ranging from criminal investigations to business marketing.  

Blackburn was born and raised in Detroit and attended Cass Technical High School. He graduated from MSU with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology. Darnell received his master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix in 2007. Darnell is also the founder and owner of PRAT LLC, a consulting company that specializes in soft skills training for organizations in Cultural Competency, Verbal De-Escalation, and Implicit Bias.  Blackburn has acted as a facilitator with the US Department of Justice alongside Attorneys General Loretta Lynch and Jeff Sessions on police and community relations. He sits on numerous committees and currently holds numerous certifications. He is a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc., NOBLE and several other professional organizations.