Thursday, June 23, 2011

Police chief chat

Chief Chat
               On Tuesday, June 21, 2011,  the Rolla Street Crimes Unit searched a residence. During the search, heroin, marijuana, and drug paraphernalia were located and seized. On Wednesday June 22, 2011, I accompanied officers from the Patrol Division, the Street Crimes Unit, the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department and the South Central Drug Task Force on the execution of a search warrant for illegal drugs at a residence in Rolla. The residence was occupied by one adult and 4 children under the age of 11. The adult was secured and the children were kept on a sofa in the living room of the residence. During the search the children indicated that they were hungry so officers on the scene went into the kitchen and prepared pizza and punch for the children. The officers did what they could to keep the children’s minds off the task at hand and soon we could hear the children laughing as they began to poke fun at one of the plain clothes officers pants. Both the officers and the children thought the male plain clothes officer was wearing girls pants. I wish all of you could have witnessed how the children were quickly transformed from being scared and hungry to having food and a good time. We are not as bad as we are made out to be sometimes. The search produced meth, syringes and other meth products in the home.  As a result of the investigation, the adult from the residence was arrested and incarcerated at the Phelps County Jail. 
·                    This past week, the Rolla Police Department handled 772 calls for service. Of these calls there were: 21 arrests, 22 alarms, 19 accidents, 36 traffic complaints, 12 check the well being calls, 110 traffic stops, 32 disturbance calls (including domestics), 18 suspicious nature calls, 20 assists of other agency requests, 5 narcotics violations, 34 stealing complaints, 69 security checks, 6 intoxicated persons reports, 1 order of protection violation, 11 destructions of property, 50 animal control calls and 16 escorts. This call total is up 34 calls from last week. Yet another busy week!
            During this time of year, it seems that we are subject to an increased frequency of power outages. Sometimes this is due to storm activity in the area and sometimes it just occurs for no apparent reason. Either way, please do not call Central Dispatch to report your power outage. We can only refer you to Rolla Municipal Utilities. RMU does not need your call as they can tell on their grid when the power is out and will take appropriate action. Your calls to Central Dispatch or RMU serve no purpose. It is best to just rely on your emergency plan until the power is restored. This will prevent a huge influx of calls both to the Central Dispatch and to the Rolla Municipal Utilities and will free up personnel at each entity to do their particular duties.
            I would like to take this opportunity to wish former Central Dispatch telecommunicator Clint Capps my best as he prepares to begin a new career in law enforcement with the Missouri State Highway Patrol. Clint has accepted a position with this great agency and will begin his academy training on July 1st, 2011. Clint has served as a member of our RPD family for nearly 2 ½ years, coming to us from Salem, Missouri. Clint was a great employee and will be missed by all as he seeks out new challenges. The MSHP is fortunate to have him on board.
            Just one week from today, we will kick off one of our busiest weekends of the year with the upcoming 4th of July celebration. As you know, the country will be celebrating Independence Day next weekend and the Rolla community will follow suit. Traditionally part of the celebration involves the use of fireworks over this period. If you and your family decide to take part in this activity please use caution and a little bit of common sense. Parents should monitor all fireworks use and be sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions when discharging the product. City ordinance under Section 14-2 of the Rolla City Code states that any individual or organization may discharge fireworks, without a permit, from July 1 to July 5 only! The discharge of fireworks during any other day of the year is prohibited. Please also remember that fireworks may not be discharged between the hours of midnight and 8 a.m., and no fireworks shall be discharged within 50 feet of any stand, booth, or other location where fireworks are being sold. It is also unlawful for anyone to discharge fireworks in City parks any day throughout the year (Section 31-1, Rolla City Code).

            Another 4th of July tradition is the annual Lion’s Club Carnival. This carnival has become one of the premiere carnivals in the area and is attended each year by thousands of participants who enjoy the rides, games and of course the outstanding fireworks display that seems to get better each year. This year the 76th Annual Rolla Lions Club Carnival will be held Friday, July 1 through Monday, July 4. The Rolla Police Department and Rolla Fire and Rescue will be on site with the Homeland Security Mobile Command Post that will be used to provide dispatch services in the event of an injury or mishap at the park. Central Communications telecommunicators will be utilizing the on-board dispatching system to relay information back to the 9-1-1 Center. We will also have officers patrolling the site so if you need assistance or need to report unsafe activity, please contact them. And please remember that traffic congestion in the area is extremely high during the carnival and motorists need use caution when traveling in or near the Lion’s Club Park. The Missouri State Highway Patrol and the Phelps County Sheriff’s Department will be assisting our patrol division with traffic control.
Have a great week!           
Chief Mark Kearse

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