Drug watch: I just wanted to let you all know about the busy week of the narcotics officers. In just over a week, the unit has served three search warrants resulting in 10 arrests. As a result of the search warrants and other investigations this week, a total of 5 meth labs have been seized. One of the labs was a massive one that was being used by what I considered to be professional meth cooks. They were producing several ounces of meth a week. Also seized during the past week was several controlled substance pills, marijuana, over 400 pseudoephedrine tablets and 8 firearms. They have been exceptionally busy and very productive. I want to say thanks for doing a great job.
This past week, the Rolla Police Department handled 654 calls for service. Of these calls there were: 24 arrests, 7 alarm calls, 15 traffic accidents, 17 traffic complaints, 12 check the well being requests, 118 traffic stops, 28 disturbance calls (including domestics), 15 suspicious nature complaints, 19 assists of other agencies, 15 field interviews, 7 escorts, 4 leave without paying complaints, 64 security checks, 1 loitering complaint and 39 animal control complaints. This call total is down 73 calls from last week but yet, another busy week!
Well you can certainly tell Spring is on the way, 3 weeks ago Phelps County was hit was severe wind storms causing major damage to some businesses and homes. Last week we had forest fires that damaged homes and hundreds of acres of forest land, and this week we have flash flooding. I can only wonder what is next! As you know Spring time in Missouri brings rain and sometimes lots of it. This is the time of the year that we need to pay close attention to flash flood warnings and low water bridge crossings. Almost half of all flash flood fatalities occur in vehicles. Contrary to popular belief, many people may not realize two feet of water on a bridge or highway can float most vehicles. If the water is moving rapidly, the car, truck, or SUV can be swept off the bridge and into the creek. A good philosophy to follow is “Turn Around – Don’t Drown!” The few extra minutes it may take to find an alternate route may save a lifetime of grief.
Another Spring time tradition is the annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration which began this week. On Wednesday, Lt. Rick Williams and VIPS Director Vince Giacolone escorted St. Pat and his court to the Downtown Band Shell where he was greeted by Rolla Mayor Bill Jenks and MS&T Vice Chancellor Steve Malott. The 104th Annual St. Pat’s Parade will be held this Saturday, March 17, 2012 at 11:00 am on Pine Street. Our officers will be posted along the route to ensure safety and assist with traffic flow. We would like to remind you that Rolla City Ordinance Sec. 4-2. Drinking in Public: says it shall be unlawful for any person to drink, expose or display any beer or alcoholic liquors in open containers upon the public streets or within any public place of the city; provided, however, that this Section shall not apply to public places legally licensed and where such drinking is permitted. Exceptions to this section may be granted by City Administration on a case-by-case basis.
And new this year, Rolla City Ordinance 4033, states persons participating in a parade may not distribute gifts, merchandise, literature, hand-outs, candy or other materials from moving vehicles or parade floats during the parade. Participants may assign walkers to hand or toss items to spectators along the parade route. Walkers shall only distribute gifts, merchandise, literature, hand-outs, candy or other materials as far off the road as possible to avoid children and other spectators from running into the streets and so long as such activity does not draw spectators into the streets. This new ordinance was enacted in an effort to keep children from darting out into the parade route to retrieve items thrown during the parade.
I am proud to announce that the City of Rolla has reposed special trust and confidence in the knowledge, courage, integrity, and professional excellence of Staff/Sgt. Jim Macormic In view of these qualities and his demonstrated leadership potential and dedicated service to the Rolla Police Department, he is therefore promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, effective immediately. I am also proud to announce that the City of Rolla has reposed special trust and confidence in the knowledge, courage, integrity, and professional excellence of Cpl. (Investigator) Derrick Dillon/837. In view of these qualities and his demonstrated leadership potential and dedicated service to the Rolla Police Department, he is therefore promoted to the rank of Detective, effective immediately. Congratulations to Jim and Derrick! Those Rolla Police employees celebrating March hiring date anniversaries include Communications Chief Paula Volkmer with 30 years of service, Cpl. Chrissy Smith with 14 years of service and Cpl. John Frey with 10 years of service. Congratulations Paula, Chrissy and John!
The Rolla Police Department will be participating in DWI Saturation Patrols. The sobering fact is that impaired driving contributes to 30 percent of all Missouri traffic fatalities. In 2011, 220 people were killed and 916 seriously injured in crashes involving an impaired driver. That’s why the Rolla Police Department will join other Missouri law enforcement agencies to crack down on impaired driving March 16-18. The Rolla Police Department will participate in statewide sobriety checkpoints and DWI saturation patrols enforcing Missouri’s DWI laws and keeping impaired drivers off the road. “Driving impaired is simply not worth all the consequences,” said Sgt. Tim Mayfield. “Our message is simple and unwavering: Drive sober or Get Pulled Over.” For more information, please visit www.saveMOlives.com .
The United States Attorney’s Office announced today that John D. Farnell has been sentenced to 162 months in prison for three Missouri bank robberies. Since the bank robberies were armed robberies where Farnell pointed a loaded revolver at the tellers when he demanded the money, he was sentenced an additional 7 years (84 months), on top of the 78 months he received for the three bank robberies. According to court documents, Farnell robbed the First Community National Bank of Crawford County in Cuba, MO, on April 29, 2010; Commerce Bank in Moberly, MO, on March 13, 2009; and Town & Country Bank, Rolla, MO, on December 18, 2009. Farnell, 60, Fulton, MO, pled guilty in December to three felony counts of bank robbery and one felony count of possession of a firearm in connection with a crime of violence. He appeared today for sentencing before United States District Judge Jean C. Hamilton. This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Missouri Highway Patrol; and the Rolla, Cuba and Moberly Police Departments.
Chief Mark Kearse