Thursday, July 31, 2014

Bilingual Skills Are Put To the Test

Officer Jordan Johnson (left) with  a Blue Valley ESOL
Kindergarten Class.
The Overland Park Police Department (OPPD) has partnered with the Blue Valley School District (BVSD) since its inception.  OPPD has provided D.A.R.E. Officers in the past and currently staffs all BVSD high schools and middle schools with School Resource Officers (SRO).

One of the many activities we are honored to participate in is speaking requests to students.  On June 20th, 2014 Officer Jordan Johnson was asked to partner with Blue Valley School Officers to teach kindergarten students about police officers.  This particular class was somewhat of a challenge for the officers because English is the second language of the students.
Officer Jordan, a bilingual officer, speaks Spanish and was happy to assist the class in providing instruction in both languages.  He, and the other officers, made a quick connection with the students and they very much enjoyed talking with the officers and seeing the police equipment. 

We value our continued partnership with the BVSD and all the students in our City.  Tammi Graff, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Teacher, said “the kids were thrilled with the presentation” and “pulling the police car up by the building, out of the rain, so the students didn’t have to miss the car experience was perfect”.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

National Night Out (NNO) Is Almost Here

Tuesday, August 5, 2014 is National Night Out (NNO) across the country. NNO held its first event on August 7, 1984. It was introduced as "America's Night Out Against Crime".

The purpose of NNO is to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and to send a message to criminals letting them know neighborhoods are involved and partnered with police to fight crime.

Last year, 37.8 million people in over 16,124 communities across the country participated in NNO activities. This year, at least 19 neighborhoods in Overland Park will officially participate in NNO activities. Many of our residents will turn on their exterior lights to support NNO but, some will also have picnics and other outdoor events.

NATIONAL NIGHT OUT is designed to:

• Heighten crime and drug prevention awareness;
• Generate support for, and participation in, local anticrime programs;
• Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships; and
• Send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

Make yourself aware of what is happening in your neighborhood, and call police if you witness a crime or see suspicious activity. The Police Department relies on our citizens to be watchful and make us aware of things that are happening. Police Officers cannot be everywhere all the time, but together we can have a huge impact on crime and keep our community safe.

The link below will take you to a website that provides more information on National Night Out.

http://www.nationaltownwatch.org/nno/

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

OPPD Now Has A Permanent Drug Drop Box

Beginning on July 24th the residents of Overland Park now have a permanent and convenient location to dispose of excess and expired prescription and over-the-counter medications.

The Overland Park Police Department has partnered with the Johnson County Regional Prevention Center to establish a permanent Prescription Drug Take Back Drop Box which is located inside the Sanders Justice Center (12400 Foster Street). The hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm.

This service is free and can be done anonymously without having to fill out any paperwork. Any items dropped off should be in pill or patch form only, no liquids or needles will be accepted.

“Teens and young adults access the majority of prescription drugs of abuse from friends and relatives. Adults can be the unknowing suppliers of prescription medications being used in unintended ways. We are thankful for another opportunity for Johnson County citizens to dispose of medications in a safe and environmentally responsible way. Working in partnership with the Overland Park Police Department, we hope to help reduce access to potential medications of abuse” - Shana Burgess, Director, The Regional Prevention Center of Johnson County Mental Health.

Interim Police Chief Mark Kessler had this to say about the box, “I'd like to personally thank the Regional Prevention Center for taking the initiative to make this permanent drug box a reality. The drop box will provide the residents of Overland Park with a safe and efficient way to get rid of unwanted and unused medications. This effort will hopefully decrease the chance that they'll become misused or abused.”

Since the inception of the DEA's Drug Take Back Event in 2011, 4.1 million pounds (2,123 tons) of prescription medications have been removed from circulation. To date, there have been 7,086 pounds of pills taken back at Overland Park drop off locations since October 2011.


 

Monday, July 28, 2014

Now's the Time to Sign Up for the Next Citizen's Police Academy

Are you curious about the different roles and various assignments members of the police department engage in on a daily basis? If the answer is yes, then we've got a great deal for you.

In our on-going effort to partner with our citizens and to provide them an opportunity to get to know us, we are pleased to announce our next Citizen’s Police Academy (CPA). The goal of the CPA is to provide citizens with the knowledge and understanding of the basic functions that are  provided by the Overland Park Police Department. Each participant will be able to ask questions, receive definitive information and participate in practical police exercises.

The CPA is an eight-week (28-hour) academy and begins on September 23rd through November 11th. Participants will learn about patrol operations, firearms training, crime analysis, narcotics, traffic enforcement and much more. These citizens will learn from “hands on” demonstrations what it’s really like to be a police officer.

For more information and/or to sign-up for the CPA please visit: http://www.opkansas.org/city-government/police-department/police-special-services-and-programs/citizens-police-academy/ or call Officer Betsy Selman at 913-469-8500 Ext. 4653. If interested, complete the online application before the September 16, 2014 deadline.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Ramp to Southbound US69 Highway Shut Down at 135th for Trash Truck Fire

The Overland Park Police Department is currently working a fire at the ramp to southbound US69 Highway at 135th Street. A Deffenbaugh trash truck's load caught on fire and they had to drop the contents at that location.

Fire crews are on scene and the ramp will be closed for an extended amount of time while it's cleaned up.


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Assistance Needed in Identifying Repeat Shoplifters

The Overland Park Police Department is requesting assistance in identifying two subjects involved in shoplifting items twice over a three day period. The pair also recently hit another beauty supply store in Johnson County.                                                      

The male and female in the attached pictures hit a beauty supply store in Overland Park on July 12th and 14th, taking over $1000 worth of products from that store alone.

The male suspect removes items from their packaging and places them inside his pockets while the female distracts the employees. Both of them leave the store without paying for anything.

The female is described as being in her early 20’s, approximately 5’4 and a thin build. One witness stated she had a tattoo outline of a blue and green dragon on her left calf.

The male is described as tall, with an average build, in his late 30’s –early 40’s, with a nose ring on the left side. He had a limp on his right leg and has been seen with and without a cane. Surveillance video has also shown him using the cane to support both legs.

Anyone with information on the identity of these individuals is asked to contact the TIPS HOTLINE at 816-474-TIPS or Detective Byron Pierce at 913-535-3193.

 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Help Identify Repeat Cell Phone Thieves

Our Investigations Division is currently working on identifying individuals who've been involved in several thefts of cell phones from Kiosks located throughout Oak Park Mall.

So far we've taken a total of nine different theft reports involving these subjects.

Anyone with information on the identity of these people is asked to call the TIPS HOTLINE at 816-474-TIPS, or Detective Rick Breshears at 913-344-8767.