Friday, August 30, 2013

To the Lake!

It’s the Thursday before the Labor Day weekend.  If you are like a lot of others you might be making plans to head out tonight and get an early start on the holiday weekend.  Maybe your plans are to head out to the lake for an end-of-summer boating event.  While there’s not really any place in the city that allows for this type of event, we know that many Overland Park residents will head out of town to enjoy a day or weekend at the lake.  Having that in mind we thought we'd cover a few camping and lake safety topics.

 If you are hauling a trailer somewhere:

-        Check tire pressure on your trailer and don’t over load your trailer

-        Balance the weight and distribute cargo evenly

-        Secure all items

-        Adjust the height properly

-        Make sure the hitch, coupler, draw bar and other equipment are properly secured.

-        Make sure the wiring is properly connected and all your lights are working

-        Remember hauling a trailer will great increase your stopping distance, adjust your driving as necessary.

If you plan on boating or swimming:

-        Swim in designated areas and don’t swim alone

-        Wear a life jacket

-        Avoid mixing alcohol with boating and swimming

-        Follow boating laws and regulations for the waterway you are using

-        Be aware of those around you

-        Properly use boating lights and flags

We want you to have fun this holiday weekend, but we also want you to come back safely too!  If you are headed out, enjoy the weekend and we’ll see you back in a few days!

For further safety information check out the following websites that we reviewed:

Thursday, August 29, 2013

She Should've Just Left a Tip

When you get services at a nail salon you are supposed to leave a tip for the nail technician, not take their I-Pad.  Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened a few days ago at one Overland Park nail salon.

Our victim reported a female customer entered the salon and asked to sit in a pedicure chair while she waited for her services.  When the store got busy with customers the female picked up an I-Pad sitting at our victim’s nail area and concealed it in her purse.  She got her nails done and paid in cash before leaving the store with the I-Pad.

The female was not recognized by any of the employees as being a regular or previous customer.  Maybe you recognize her and can help identify her.

She was described as a black female, about 30-40 years old, slender build, 5’06” to 5’09” tall.  She wore her hair up in a bun.

Please look at the pictures below. If you can identify her, contact the Overland Park police department at 913-344-8750.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

I Need a Copy of a Police Report

So the officer responded to your call for help, took the report, collected the evidence and then left.  Now what?  If you find yourself in a position where you need a copy of that report, you may be left wondering just how to get a copy.  A visit to the Police Records Department may need to be on your to do list.

There are several different categories of reports and the information that can be made available is dependent on what type of report it is and your part in that report.

If you filed an Information Report (not a criminal offense) you will be able to receive the first page of the report.  This is provided to those who make their request in person and the cost is $0.25.  The information covered on the first page will include the following information:

-         The date and time of the report

-         The date and time of the reported incident

-         The type of reported incident

-         The name, address and phone number of the reporting party

-         The name of the officer who took the report

If you filed a Criminal Investigation, only the front page of the report, with redacted information is available to the public.  Redacted means it will contain only limited information as allowed by the Kansas Open Records Act.  The exception to this is if the report is needed by the person facing pending criminal charges who may need the report for court purposes.  If you are facing criminal charges and need a copy of your report for City or Municipal charges, you will need to make that request in person and complete a discovery request.  This request form is provided by the records department.  If you are facing charges through the District Court, you will need to make your request through the District Attorney’s office.  Remember, the entire criminal investigation report is only available to the person facing the charges and those charges must be currently pending.  As a victim or other involved party in a criminal investigation, you will only receive the front page of the report (Public Record).

If you are the arrested party in a criminal investigation and you want the Arrest Report, you'll need to pay a fee of $3.00 and show a valid ID. This is only to the person who was arrest and must be picked up in person.

Accident reports are available on-line at  These are free of charge.  If you choose to respond to police records to get a copy printed out, there is a $2.00 fee.  The accident report will be just the report.  If you want to get any of the photographs or videos that may be associated to that accident report you will need to specifically request that, and there is a $10.85 charge for these items.

The records department can also provide, when requested, any video that may exist related to a traffic stop.  These videos may be reviewed by appointment, and if you decide you want to purchase a copy, this can be done for a fee of $27.12.

The records department is located at our Sanders Justice Center building at 12400 Foster.  They are open Monday through Thursday, 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, and Friday, 8:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Two Lessons Learned

It was one of those calls that could have ended quite a bit differently.  After all, if you were to go barging into a stranger’s home, unannounced, with unknown intentions, there’s really no telling how the resident of that home will react.  For one uninvited guest, he was met by a very upset and protective father and husband.

It was just after midnight on a Saturday night into Sunday morning a few weeks ago when police responded to a call regarding a possible burglary in progress.  They arrived and learned an intoxicated male entered the wrong home.  The intoxicated male thought he was in the right by trying to stand his ground in a home he thought he belonged in and the resident of the home knew he was in the right when he confronted the intruder.  The intoxicated male came out on the loosing end of brief physical struggle and ultimately was arrested for battery.

In the end there were probably two lessons learned.  The intoxicated intruder hopefully learned that drinking too much might lead to problems and from now on the residents of the home will likely lock the doors even when they are home.

Monday, August 26, 2013

The Wheels on the Bus..........

When something comes across the desk that’s worth sharing we make sure to pass it along.  These two public services announcements done by Manhattan-Ogden USD 383, 502 Media Group, and Briggs Auto, show the importance of stopping for school buses while they are loading and unloading.

Since the school year just started and we are all getting back into the swing of things regarding school schedules and bus routes, this seemed like a timely message.  So if the thought of potentially getting a $150 ticket for passing a school bus that has the stop arm out isn’t enough to make you think twice, maybe these videos will do the trick.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Accident on I435 at Nall Involving Six Vehicles

Overland Park Police are currently working an accident on westbound I-435 Highway just west of Nall. There appears to be minor injuries, but may involve up to six vehicles. On-ramps at Nall and Roe are being shut down and traffic is being diverted. The interstate is down to one lane while officers get the accident removed.

Please use caution if traveling through that area and look for an alternate route if possible until we can get it cleared up.

UPDATE: 8:45 AM -The Accident is now cleared and traffic is flowing smoothly once again.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

New Officers Sworn in this Week

There are people all over the place that have a goal in mind and work towards that goal.  Those who choose to take on law enforcement as a career are no different that anyone else who set their minds to their own career path.  There is a certain amount of pride most police officer recruits feel just to know they were selected, often times out of large pools of candidates, to wear the uniform of their selected city.

On Monday, five new officer recruits were sworn into the City of Overland Park’s Police Department.  They will join another recruit that was sworn in last week, and together they will begin training almost immediately. 

There is no doubt each of these recruits worked hard and were determined to get to this point.  In fact, one of the recruits demonstrated that very determination and focus when she started out with the City of Overland Park as an intern.  She must have liked what she saw because she went on to work as a dispatcher before completing the extensive process to eventually be hired as a police officer.

These new officers will be participating in the pre-academy portion of their training this week.  From there they will go on to the Johnson County Regional Police Academy and then to post academy training.  The last phase will basically be "on-the-job" or real life  assessment by a Field Training Officer before they are officially out on their own and taking calls with the rest of their co-workers.

Congratulations to these officer recruits!  The fun is just beginning.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

When Breadcrumbs Won't Work

A short time back we posted a blog about juveniles that slip out without being noticed and the panic that it can create.  We take just as many calls about missing adults that are diagnosed with dementia and Alzheimer’s.  The challenges are very similar with one exception – when people see a child wandering alone, everyone points it out but it’s not odd to see an adult out walking alone.

If you find yourself caring for or related in anyway to someone who has dementia or Alzheimer’s, this blogs for you.  We’ve taken some time to research the subject of adults who wander.  The Alzheimer’s Association had suggestions to help prevent wandering and what to do if your loved one does wander. 

The tips to help prevent wandering were as follows:

  • Carry out daily activities and have a routine.
  • Identify the most likely times of day that warning may occur. Plan activities at those times to prevent anxiety, agitation and restlessnes.
  • Reassure the person if he or she feels lost, abandoned or disoriented.
  • Ensure all basic needs are met.
  • Avoid busy places that are confusing and can cause disorientation.
  • Place locks out of the line of sight.
  • Camouflage doors and door knobs by painting them the same color as the walls or covering them with removable curtains or screens.
  • Use devices that signal when a door or window is opened.
  • Provide supervision. Never lock them in a home alone or leave them in a car without supervision.
  • Keep car keys out of sight.
  • If night wandering is a problem make sure the person has restricted fluids two hours before bedtime and has gone to the bathroom just before bed.

The tips for what to do if your loved one does wander were:

  • Keep a list of people on call for help.
  • Ask neighbors, friends and family to call if they see the person alone.
  • Keep a recent, close-up photo and updated medical information on hand to give to police.
  • Know your neighborhood and pinpoint potential dangerous areas near home.
  • Know if the person is left-hand or right-hand dominate. Wandering generally follows the direction of the dominate hand.
  • Keep a list of places where the person may wander.
  • Provide the person with ID jewelry.
  • Consider having the person carry or wear and electronic tracking GPS device that helps manage their location
  • If the person does wander, search the immediate area for no more than 15 minutes – then call 911.
One suggested program they mentioned on their website was MedicAlert + Alzheimer’s Association Safe Return.  This program provides a personalized ID jewelry necklace or bracelet with a phone number and ID number for people to help identify the lost loved one when found.  The weblink will provide you with further information.

We also found a website for the Next of Kin Registry (NOKR)  This free tool is a non-profit organization that was established so that your emergency contact information could be accessed in the event of an emergency.

Calls about missing loved ones that suffer from Alzheimer’s or dementia can leave a lasting impression on those who respond on those calls.  No one wants to have to go through the worry, even for a short time.  These suggestions won’t prevent this from happening at all, but they might reduce the possibility and give you a plan for what to do if your loved one goes missing.

Monday, August 19, 2013

They'll See You

Have you seen a few more officers out on traffic stops recently? That is probably because this past week the Overland Park Police Department joined various other agencies nationwide in the Labor Day “You Drink. You Drive. You Lose.” campaign.

We participate in these grant-funded campaigns regularly to combat driving under the influence violations and do seat belt enforcement. This campaign runs from Thursday, August 15th to Monday, September 2nd.

You may have seen some of the commercials that warn “they’ll see you before you see them.” Don’t take the chance on trying to find out if this is accurate. Just don’t drink and drive and remember to buckle up.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Coffee With COPPS Reminder

Just a quick reminder that there is a Coffee With COPPS event today from 8:00 am to 10:00 am.  Members of the police department’s Community Oriented Policing and Problem Solving Unit (COPPS) will be at the HyVee Caribou Coffee, located at 8501 W 95th Street to be available for conversation and concerns.  There will also be officers available to answer bicycle safety questions.

Caribou Coffee is providing ½ priced coffee to patrons attending the event so make plans to share your morning cup of coffee with us.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Drivers Awareness Results

On Tuesday, August 13th, eight Overland Park officers worked our Drivers Awareness Campaign.  The event was conducted over a six hour time period and the officers were assigned to various locations in the city.  Most of these locations were high accident locations and traffic complaint areas.

The officers stopped a total of 106 vehicles, wrote 128 traffic tickets and hopefully through their presence reminded many others to drive safely.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Good Night

Overland Park officers conducted a DUI saturation patrol on Friday, August 9, 2013.  The officers made a total of 40 vehicle stops between 10:00 PM and 2:00 AM.  These stops were based on a variety of different violations which included speeding, seat belt violations, red light violations, turn violations, lane change violations and equipment violations.  Two drivers were tested and one driver was arrested and there were no reports of DUI accidents.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Just So You Know

Some might call it a warning.  Others might refer to it as a friendly reminder.  It doesn't matter to us what you call it.  All we want is for folks to drive safe.  With that goal in mind, officers will be out today on a Drivers Awareness Campaign.

We regularly conduct traffic enforcement to keep the roadways safe for the drivers who travel through and around this city everyday.  We concentrate on high accident locations, construction areas and high complaint areas.  It’s not about writing tickets, it’s about being safe.  If we wanted to just write tickets, we wouldn't tell you about it.

For some just seeing an increased presence is enough to remind drivers to slow down and mind the traffic laws.  For others it might take a face to face meeting with an officer.  We hope that all it takes for you to drive safe is knowing we are there watching.  If knowing wasn't enough and you do get stopped, remember pull to the right, stop and be patient, they’re just doing their jobs – making sure everyone stays safe.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Not Just City Slickers

Some would say that the City of Overland Park employees get asked to do a lot of different things.  Well, that's certainly a true statement, and since the Animal Control Unit is part of the police department, we get to brag about when they do something out of the ordinary too.

The morning of Friday, August 9th turned out to be a day that was anything other than ordinary for one Overland Park Animal Control Officer.  That morning the Animal Control Unit was asked to help with cattle.  Now one probably wouldn't think that the City of Overland Park’s Animal Control Unit would be so prepared to assist with cattle.  You were probably thinking the Animal Control Unit for Overland Park stuck mainly to cats, dogs and the occasional snake, bat or coyote call.  However, several years ago the Animal Control Unit realized that the city had grown to incorporate a large rural area.  With that came cows, horses and even some more unique livestock.  Officers within the unit started to prepare for the “changing population.”

Friday that preparation came in handy to the Kansas City, Missouri Police and Fire Departments.  These departments responded to a roll over accident involving a semi-truck pulling a trailer full of cattle.  Handling the accident was one thing – trying to corral a herd of cattle was quite another challenge.  That’s were Overland Park Animal Control Officer Mike Hyde stepped in.

ACO Hyde brought some of the City’s portable cattle panels to the scene of the accident and set them in up so that the cattle, when freed from the overturned truck, would be channeled into the waiting trailer.  He then helped with moving the cattle from the overturned truck to the new trailer.  Not too shabby for city Animal Control Unit.

Friday, August 9, 2013

A Closer Look

Want a chance to get to see what it’s like to be trained as a police officer?  The Overland Park Citizens Police Academy is coming up and you could do just that.  The Citizens Police Academy was designed to educate citizens on the basic information regarding the police profession.  This training won’t make you qualified to be a police officer and isn’t for Police Officer candidates, but it will give you the opportunity to gain insight into some of the why and how behind the badge.

The Academy is an eight week (28-hours course).  Participants learn about patrol operations, firearms training and weapons systems, crime analysis, narcotics and traffic enforcement to name just a few of the covered topics.  The instructors are police officers and provide “hands on” practicals.  In addition there are demonstrations by the police K-9 and SWAT teams and opportunities to observe and interact with tactical police equipment and vehicles.

Sound interesting?  Applicants don’t have to be an Overland Park resident, but you don’t have to be at least 18years old and have no criminal record.  Criminal history background checks are conducted on all applicants.  Persons selected to attend the Academy are expected to participate in seven (7) out of eight (8) sessions.  If this isn’t possible for you, please do not apply because the class size is limited.

Did we mention it’s free?

Classes run September 24th through November 12th (Tuesday nights) from 6 pm to 9:30 pm.  Completed applications are due no later than September 10th.  To apply online visit:

or see the city’s website for further information:

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Make the Right Call

You know we take DUI enforcement seriously.  We work hard to discourage driving impaired through Overland Park all the time, but tomorrow night will be another DUI Saturation Patrol, which means we’ll be working even harder.

You might ask why dedicate so many hours to DUI enforcement.  While there are many benefits to increased patrol, the goal is preventing those serious DUI related incidents.  We want to stop those impaired drivers before they potentially hurt themselves or someone else.

Think of it this way, while it may be no fun to get a call in the middle of the night to pick up an intoxicated friend or family member from the station, that call is better than the knock at the door where a police officer tells you something tragic has happened.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Cup of Joe With an LEO?

LEO you ask?  Law Enforcement Officer.  That’s right, it’s time for another Coffee with COPPS event.

Next Friday, August 16th, officers from the Overland Park Police Department’s Community Oriented Policing and Problem Solving Unit (COPPS) will be at HyVee’s Caribou Coffee, 8501 W 95th Street, from 8:00 am to 10:00 am.  Caribou Coffee is providing ½ priced coffee to patrons attending the event.

The COPPS unit works hard to help strengthen the partnership between members of the community and the Police Department.  They invite the public to come by and strike up a conversation with officers.  This event they will also have qualified Bicycle Officers on hand to speak with citizens about policing in their communities with bicycles.  It would be a great opportunity to bring your children, if they aren’t back in school yet, to learn about bicycle safety.

Mark you calendar and we’ll see you there!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Oldest Profession in the World?

Prostitution is considered by some to be the oldest profession in the world.  It all depends on how you look at it, but this past weekend a few in Overland Park had to be reminded that it is also illegal.

The prostitution sting conducted by Overland Park detectives resulted in four arrests.  Two were arrested for prostitution, two were arrested for promoting prostitution and one faced an additional drug related charge.  The numbers seem to indicate people might be learning that participating in this type of crime in Overland Park is a bad idea.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Road Work Tomorrow on Nall Avenue

Road construction is never convenient, but if we can give you a heads up it might at least make your morning commute a little easier.  Having that in mind, tomorrow morning crews will be working on reconstructing a portion of storm drainage pipe that will require all lanes of northbound Nall Avenue between College Boulevard and 112th Street to be closed.  This work is anticipated to continue through Friday, August 9th, weather permitting.

If you normally use Nall Avenue in this area, you might want to consider using Roe Avenue.  For updates regarding road construction visit the city’s webpage at

Friday, August 2, 2013

Oh No They Didn’t

That's Some Tree
How much do you think it would cost to remove two trees?  Now let’s make this fair, let’s make sure you know that they were large and mature locust trees.  Would it surprise to hear that one senior resident was charged $8,000 for removal of two mature locust trees from her yard?  Well it happened earlier this spring.

We didn’t hear about it until just a few days ago when we received a call from the resident’s adult son.  He explained that earlier this spring a tree trimming company came to his mother’s neighborhood and convinced her that two of the three trees in her yard were in danger of falling.  Although he didn’t agree, his mother did not consult him first before having the company begin work on the trees.  An odd part to this story is that the company had a representative drive the elderly female to the bank to withdraw the $8000 payment in cash, rather than accepting a check.  By the time our reporting party heard about it, the work was done and payment made.

Fast forward a few months and that brings us to this week’s event.  The tree trimming company returned to the neighborhood.  This time it convinced the resident that she needed to have the two stumps ground out – that it didn’t take care of before – and that it needed to spray for bugs.  The company agreed to do for $1,000.  This time the son got involved and put a stop to anything further before his mother’s money was gone again.

Now we don’t normally get involved in civil matters between parties, but when it appears someone is being taken advantage of, we just can’t be silent.  We want to remind you again to look out for our aging loved ones.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

It’s a Party and You’re Invited

National Night Out is rapidly approaching and with this being the 30th anniversary for this community oriented program it’s time to make your own plans to get out there, meet your neighbors if you haven’t already and take a proactive approach to crime prevention!

Each year the police department participates in this nationwide program that is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness and generate support and participation in local anti-crime programs.  Most importantly it strengthens neighborhood spirit and improves the partnership between the police and the community. When that happens, it sends a strong message to criminals that the neighbors are organized and fighting back.

Last year the National Night Out campaign was a success in bringing together groups of neighborhood organizations, business and law enforcement.  This year Overland Park Police will be teaming with the Deanna Rose Farmstead.

We are encouraging children and families to join us at the Farmstead on Tuesday, August 6th from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm.  There will be a Flashlight Parade that starts at 7:30 and children are invited to dress up as their favorite superhero.  Don’t forget to bring your flashlight so you can join in the Flashlight Parade.

Mark your calendars, it’s a special kind of party day and you need to make sure you are there August 6th!

For more information visit the National Night Out website at