Friday, August 22, 2014

A Break from the Beat

The work day of a police officer is always changing, but in some ways it can seem like it is the same thing over and over.  Not so for Officer Ebberts.  On August 16th he got the golden ticket to spend the day at the Queen's Price Chopper 12th annual Block Party!

Price Chopper had this big "Thank You!" party all planned out for their customers.  They had free food and ice cream.  They did a C.H.I.P's program (child identification) and had games and prizes.  The Oscar Meyer Weiner Mobile was there along with Mr. Peanut himself and the Price Chomper's.  They had it all planned out and then Officer Ebberts "crashed" the party in a whole different way.

He stopped in and said he knew it was last minute and all, but asked if he could join the fun.  He even brought his own party favors in the way of flashlights, frisbee's, stress balls and little policemen and policewomen figurines - no he didn't bring any tickets.

Officer Ebberts, the folks from Queen's Price Chopper and the citizens had a great time visiting with you!  They sent a few pictures for us all to enjoy

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

The Heat Has Returned

If you've been outside the last couple of days you may have noticed how hot it's been lately. Forecasters are saying the current heat spell, with temperatures well in the upper 90's, will unfortunately be around for a few more days.

This summer has been relatively cool compared to previous years, but it's always safer to take precautions when spending time outside during hot and humid conditions.  The elderly and infants are particularly vulnerable, as are those working or exercising outdoors.

The City of Overland Park has two cooling centers available during business hours:

Matt Ross Community Center 8101 Marty St. 913-895-6390

Tomahawk Ridge Community Center
11902 Lowell St. 913-327-6645

Here are some tips from the American Red Cross to recognize and treat heat-related symptoms:

Heat Exhaustion

This condition is the result of excessive heat and dehydration. Symptoms of heat exhaustion include:

• Fatigue
• Dizziness
• Muscle aches and cramps
• Nausea
• Slowed or weakened heartbeat
• Headaches
• Excessive thirst
• Weakness
• Confusion or anxiety
• Fainting
• Agitation
• Drenching sweats, often accompanied by cold, clammy skin

The American Red Cross recommends the following steps for treating heat exhaustion:

• Get the person out of the heat and into a cooler place.
• Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet cloths, such as towels or sheets.
• If the person is conscious, give cool water to drink. Make sure the person drinks slowly. Give a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes.
• Do not give liquids that contain alcohol or caffeine.
• Let the victim rest in a comfortable position, and watch carefully for changes in his or her condition.

Heat Stroke  

This is the most severe form of heat illness. It is an elevated body temperature condition that can be fatal if not promptly and properly treated! Symptoms of this illness include:

• High body temperature
• The absence of sweating, with hot red or flushed dry skin
• Rapid pulse
• Difficulty breathing
• Strange behavior
• Hallucinations
• Confusion
• Agitation
• Disorientation
• Seizure
• Coma

The American Red Cross recommends the following steps for treating heat stroke:

• Call for an ambulance! Help is needed fast.
• Move the person to a cooler place.
• Quickly cool the body. Immerse victim in a cool bath, or wrap wet sheets around the body and fan it.
• Watch for signals of breathing problems.
• Keep the person lying down and continue to cool the body any way you can.
• If the victim refuses water or is vomiting or there are changes in the level of consciousness, do not give anything to eat or drink.

Remember that heat stroke can lead to death if not treated effectively and quickly!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Injury Accident Involving Several Vehicles at 67th and Metcalf

Officers are now arriving on scene of an injury accident involving up to 4 cars. We're also receiving calls advising one of the cars is on fire.

Traffic for northbound Metcalf is being diverted at 67th Street to go eastbound.

Please use caution when traveling through this area until we can get it opened back up.

Friday, August 15, 2014

UPDATE: Subjects Have Been Identified

Thanks to the help of the public and our media partners, the subjects profiled below have been identified and are awaiting formal charging through the Johnson County District Attorney's Office.

We want to express our gratitude for the help we received which was instrumental in solving this case that was originally posted back on July 23rd.
They should be considered innocent until proven guilty.

From July 23rd: 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.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

U.S. Service Flag Proudly Displayed at City Buildings

If you have been by the Sanders Justice Center, or Scafe or Westgate buildings lately, you may have noticed a new flag on display.  The Service Flag (pictured) is displayed to honor employees of Overland Park currently serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.

The Service Flag is white with a red border and one or more blue stars in the center.  One star is displayed for each immediate family member serving in the Armed Forces during any period of war or hostilities in which the Armed Forces of the United States may be engaged, for the duration of the war or hostilities. 

The Service Flag was first used during World War I, but fell out of favor after World War II.  It has since re-gained popularity during Desert Storm and later deployments.  It may be flown from a staff, beneath or below the flag of the United States; or suspended either vertically or horizontally, usually from a window. 

The Overland Park Police Department has a number of Police Officers and civilians  currently serving in active and reserve duty capacity.  

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Eagle Eye to the Extreme

We hear about people losing things every day – purses, wallets, keys, you name it, they've lost it.  You've probably been there at some point.  And if you've been there, you were probably pretty frantic.  Most times these stories end with a lot of headache and aggravation.  But common practice for one Overland Park officer wrote an entirely different end to the story for one citizen.

Officer Andrew Black is a veteran in Overland Park Police Department’s Traffic Safety Unit.  His normal duties have him patrolling the streets after dark looking for impaired drivers.  It’s a task he takes seriously and he has perfected the skill of being observant while driving down the road.  So much so that it carries over into his personal life.  This is a man that will drive his passengers near crazy turning around to pick stuff up out of the roadway.  On August 4th the Overland Park Command Staff learned just how observant Officer Black is at all times.

That day Officer Black’s supervisor received a call from a citizen about a contact he had with Officer Black.  The citizen explained that Officer Black had stopped by his home in Shawnee to return a wallet he found lying in the street.  The citizen went on to say losing the wallet could have caused hardship in anyone’s life and he was extremely thankful to have it back.  He said he thought police officers “only showed up at your door to hit you with a billy club”.  Officer Black showed him that was not the case.  The citizen was more than impressed when he realized that it was Officer Black’s day off!

If you’ve ever come in contact with “the big guy named Black” (one of his favorite ways to introduce himself) you probably would have to agree he’s a memorable person to say the least.  And for the citizen whose lost was found, well, Officer Black left him with not just his wallet, but a positive memory of a police officer and we couldn’t be more proud!

Monday, August 11, 2014

ABCs and 123s

Parents and police officers everywhere are jumping with joy.

Why? Because the first day for several local schools is right around the corner!

Yes - police officers are happy about this.

When young minds stay busy, they aren’t as likely to be getting into trouble. So, we look forward to school starting as much as any parent.

School starting usually means new schedules and routines and you might be one of many to find the adjustments cause you to run a little late or do things you might not normally do that are unsafe.

Making an unsafe driving decision around our schools can be bad.  Especially, when you consider there’s often a lot of foot traffic and sometimes those feet are very little. Having all that in mind, the Overland Park Police Department will be giving extra attention to the roadways around our schools.

We’re not looking to add any stress to anyone’s life. Quite the contrary, we would like you to have a stress free start to the school year. A traffic accident would only mean more stress.

We will be taking a proactive approach to remind drivers to be safe.  We’ll be out looking for a variety of violations, but to be fair, we’re telling you that we’re going to be there.  And to give you even more insight there are a few things we see parents and caregivers do regularly at the start of the year that could earn them an unwanted traffic ticket.

We regularly see parking, turning and speeding violations. We’ve even seen a number of drivers leave school properties with children not properly secured with a seatbelt.

One of the most frequent violations is the parking ordinance and occurs at the pickup times of many elementary and middle schools. What we hope parents remember is that the signs that are posted to keep drivers from stopping, standing or parking in these areas (all of which are considered parking) are posted so that drivers do not create a vision obstruction and put young lives in danger.

If you stop or park your car where it is prohibited, you could be make it impossible for a child to see oncoming traffic before entering the street or for an oncoming driver to see the child.  We’re fairly confident most drivers just don’t realize the danger they are creating and we’ll do what we can to try to eliminate the risk as much as possible.

So remember, learn something new every day.  If you want, that something could be an Overland Park traffic ordinance, which you are always welcome to do on your own. Or, if you so choose, one of our officers can always go over the law with you.

Honestly, we’d rather you just drive safe from the start.

School starts for Shawnee Mission School District on August 12th, the Olathe School District on August 13th, the Blue Valley School District and Holy Spirit on August 14th, and Ascension and John Paul Schools on August 18th.  Happy School Year!

Friday, August 8, 2014

In a Matter of Seconds

Just before midnight last night we received a call that came in as an unknown type accident in the 8400 block of Tomahawk.  Callers relayed that a vehicle had just struck two pedestrians.

The first officer on scene advised one of the injured parties was not breathing.  CPR was already in progress.  Paramedics arrived almost immediately after and pronounced this person dead.  The other person was seriously injured.

In a matter of seconds a southbound vehicle driven by a 17-year-old male struck two people and the parked car they were standing next to.  It took longer to type out this sentence than it took to happen.  It will take much longer to complete the investigation.

The male, identified as Kevin Patrick Moroney, 2/22/1962, was saying goodbye to his girlfriend, Maureen Hogg, when the two were struck by the car driven by the 17-year-old.  Moroney died at the scene and Hogg was transported to a local hospital for her injuries.

The 17-year-old driver was uninjured in the crash.  At this time he has been released to his parents as this investigation continues.

Why it happened or what was going on to have caused the crash is still unanswered at this time.  Any charges that may come from the investigation are pending the final review of the case.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Need Help Identifying Brazen and Bold

These audacious thieves must have thought those outdoor displays for patio furniture were a “take what you want” kind of set up because they helped themselves not once, but twice!  Now we’d like to see if you can help us nab them before they complete the set.

On July 10th, 2014 an Overland Park officer responded to the 10500 block of Metcalf Avenue to take one theft report that turned into two.  The first incident happened on June 30th, 2014.  On that date the suspects, who arrived in a Town and Country minivan, poached a glider type swing.  Apparently the swing was all the Town and Country could hold because on July 4th, 2014 they returned and took two outdoor counter stools.  The total loss for the items to date is over $1500.00.

Take a look at the photos below and see if anything, besides these neon green shoes, stands out to you.

The male suspect is described as a white male, approximately 25 to 30 years old, heavy set, balding with brown hair.  He possibly has facial hair.  On June 30th, he was wearing bright neon green shoes, a dark colored t-shirt, plaid shorts and glasses or sunglasses.

On July 4th that same male suspect was wearing a neon orange shirt, black shorts, and neon orange shoes.

The male had a female with him.  She is a female, slender build, with long brown hair.  She was wearing a tank top, dark running shorts, white shoes and sunglasses.

The suspect vehicle is a white, newer model Chrysler Town and Country minivan.

These two are apparently looking to do a little bit of lounging around so let’s see if we can give them accommodations at one of the finest establishments the Johnson County Sherriff’s Department has to offer, the Adult Detention Center.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Overland Park Police Department at 913-344-8750

Monday, August 4, 2014

OPPD Says Goodbye to Summer Interns

(from Left) M. Zimmerman, M. Gulley, B. Frey
Last Wednesday, three of our summer interns completed the internship program and have fine tuned their skills for a possible career in law enforcement or something similar.

During their internship period they had an opportunity to observe several divisions within the department and then reflect on what they learned. This helped the interns see how a smaller function of a unit or section is crucial to the success of the entire department. At the end of the observation period the interns researched various assignments and presented their findings on topics such as officer safety, community relations, and contemporary law enforcement trends or topics. 

The interns also had the opportunity to observe a DUI Checklane and a Vice sting operation, as well as participate in a firearms range session. They were able to meet with a district or municipal court judge, observe a court proceeding, and tour the adult detention center. The interns also helped train our officers by assisting as role players during reality-based training scenarios.

Many past interns have become employed as Overland Park police officers. We want future police officers to see first-hand how our department is "above and beyond by design". With opportunities to observe and learn, we want each intern to leave with a positive view of law enforcement and will hopefully choose to become one of Overland Park’s finest.

Internships are generally offered during the summer months. Each successful candidate is selected after consultation and coordination with undergraduate colleges or universities.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Police Warn Businesses About Callers Representing Law Enforcement

Overland Park Police want to alert area businesses to a new type of telephone scam. No one has given out any credit card information with this scam but we wanted to make sure area businesses are aware of this new tactic.

We've been made aware of businesses in the area receiving calls from someone claiming they were with the police department and that were investigating a fraud case. The caller then tries to get the names of customers who had placed large orders within the last few hours.

The scammer attempts to get the names and phone numbers of recent customers so they can call them and represent the business. The scammers will tell the customer that their credit card system is down and needs their credit card number again to complete the order.

If businesses are contacted by someone posing as law enforcement demanding information or money, they are encouraged to contact the Overland Park Police Department and ask that an officer respond to meet them personally.