Law Enforcement News

Vol. XXVI, No. 540 A publication of John Jay College of Criminal Justice/CUNY September 30, 2000

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In this issue:

Around The Nation: A coast-to-coast roundup of police news.
People & Places: Policing becomes a habit; bumps in the road; say “Ahh”; going out in style; good news for Newport News; dead or alive; missing the mark.
The long & winding road: A special supplement to this issue celebrates LEN’s 25th anniversary with a look back at policing over the last quarter of the 20th century.
Warm bodies: How two cities are bucking the troubling recruitment trend.
It’s murder out there: New Orleans tries a two-pronged approach to get a handle on homicides.
Choosing their targets: How Minneapolis police are driving down crime.
Mind fields: Charleston police learn to spot Alzheimer’s disease sufferers & come to their aid.

 People & Places

Trading uniforms

      Police can come from all walks of life, but it is unlikely that many have walked the same path as Lake Helen, Fla., officer Anna Haskins, a 60-year-old nun who joined the department in August.
      As Sister George Frederick, the newest officer on the seven-member force spent 25 years as a teacher and principal. But Haskins said she entertained the idea of becoming a law enforcement officer after seeing her brother dressed in his Monroe County, Fla., Sheriff’s Department uniform...

Bumps in the road

      After running on a platform that called for a state criminal investigation of the jail administration, a reorganization of the department’s reservist program, a private accounting audit and the implementation of a merit hiring procedure, it comes as no surprise that the transition from the administration of former DeKalb County, Ga., sheriff Sidney Dorsey to that of newly elected Sheriff Derwin Brown is expected to be rocky.
      Brown, a 46-year-old DeKalb police captain who won a runoff election on Aug. 8, said he had no immediate plans to contact Dorsey. “It doesn’t look like it is going to be a smooth transition given the circumstances of this race,” Brown told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “The biggest problem is prioritizing all the problems that need attention. There are so many of them.”..

Say “Ahh”

      Better community relations in San Antonio have also led to better eating for officers assigned to the police department’s Eastside substation, where a retired couple has provided them with free hot, home-cooked lunches once a month for the past six months.
      Carole Chatman, 64, and her husband lug tubs of spaghetti and meat sauce, enchiladas, tamales, sausage and fried chicken, along with platters of cornbread and salad to the Eastside Police Substation on every second Wednesday. The idea came to her, she told The San Antonio Express-News, while watching television...

Going out in style

      Police officers know that in their line of work, sudden death can come at any time. But rare is the officer who develops the kind of close working relationship to the trappings of human mortality as Virginia State Trooper T.C. Collins, who in his spare time is a maker of horse-drawn funeral hearses.
      Collins is a four-year veteran whose woodworking hobby took a somewhat morbid turn two years ago when a local funeral director saw the picnic table he had crafted for a neighbor. “It sounds ridiculous, I know,” David Storke, owner of Storke Funeral Home in Bowling Green, Va., told The Richmond Times-Dispatch. “It’s probably something no one else would have gotten excited about, but it was a nice picnic table.”..

Green light

      The International Association of Chiefs of Police last month bestowed first-place honors in the 1999 Chiefs Challenge Competition for Traffic Safety & Enforcement on the Newport News, Va., Police Department.
      A special award program which recognizes outstanding achievements in promoting traffic safety education and enforcement, the Chiefs Challenge award will be presented on Nov. 14 during the IACP’s annual conference in San Diego...

Where’d he go?

      Is Mel Wiley dead, or did he use his skills as an investigator and technician to create a new identity for himself? It is a question that continues to haunt residents of Medina County, Ohio, since the day 15 years ago when Wiley, the police chief of Hinckley Township, simply vanished.
      Described as a humorous but slightly isolated man, the 47-year-old Wiley had been divorced for more than a year before his disappearance. The Akron Beacon Journal reported that he had been involved with a married woman. Although she told him she would never marry him, she agreed to type the manuscript that Wiley, an aspiring writer, was working on...

Missing the mark

      While he may not be able to shoot straight, Butte-Silver Bow, Mont., Undersheriff Bob Butorovich wants the public to know that he is a straight shooter nonetheless, and that his termination in August for failing to pass the agency’s range qualification half a dozen times should not affect his candidacy for the office of sheriff — a post that does not require a qualification exam.
      Butorovich, 67, was suspended without pay on Aug. 1 after failing the test twice. He flunked four more times that month, leading to his dismissal by interim Sheriff John Walsh, who also happens to be his opponent in the November election...