Happy Memorial Day from the Wichita Falls Police Department


History of Memorial Day

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service of the United States of America. Over two dozen cities and towns claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day. While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it’s difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day.

Regardless of the exact date or location of its origins, one thing is clear – Memorial Day was borne out of the Civil War and a desire to honor our dead. It was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11. “The 30th of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land,” he proclaimed. The date of Decoration Day, as he called it, was chosen because it wasn’t the anniversary of any particular battle.
On the first Decoration Day, General James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery, and 5,000 participants decorated the graves of the 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers buried there.
The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war).
It is now observed in almost every state on the last Monday in May with Congressional passage of the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 – 363). This helped ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays, though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19th in Texas; April 26th in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10th in South Carolina; and June 3rd (Jefferson Davis’ birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.

Flood Update: All Clear Notice


Residents of Wichita Falls are advised the threat for potential large-scale flooding along and on either side of the Wichita River have subsided.  Residents can begin reentry into the affected areas.  There is still some water on the roads and residents are advised not to drive through standing water.  Residents may need to park their vehicle and walk to their homes.

The City of Wichita Falls has revoked the evacuation order for those residents.

Residents may also call 2 1 1 for additional information or the Emergency Operations Center at 761-7909.

Flood Evacuation Update

floodResidents of Wichita Falls and Wichita County are advised of the threat for the potential of large-scale flooding along the Wichita River. Predictions from the National Weather Service indicate that significant flooding along the Wichita River is very likely.

The National Weather Service is calling this an “historic” flood event.

The City of Wichita Falls and Wichita County have issued an evacuation order for residents living along the Wichita River within one-half mile of either side of the river.

A map depicting the areas that are expected to flood can be found on the City Website at http://www.wichitafallstx.gov or the Wichita County Website at http://www.co.wichita.tx.us. Anyone living in the red area of the map is advised to evacuate.

Evacuation preparations should include:

  1. Gathering all medications
  2. Making plans for housing all pets (remember their medication and special diet foods)
  3. Preparing the contents of your home: raising items, electronics, hazardous materials (paint, solvents, cleaning supplies, important papers…etc.) to a level well above the level the water may have reached in 2007
  4. Disconnecting electrical appliances
  5. Securing a copy of your insurance policies and other important documents

Residents can call 2-1-1 for additional information or the Emergency Operations Center at 761-7909.

DARE Officers and Nighthawks visit Ben Milam Elementary

ben milam fotorOfficers Danette Sheehan and Kris Henning visited with the 5th graders at Ben Milam School today. The students are about to graduate from the DARE program.  The officers were joined by Mark Watley of the Nighthawks football team and team owner Andrew Carnes.  Officer Danette and Officer Kris talked with the kids about resisting peer pressure and remembering that decisions have consequences both good and bad.  Mark talked to the 5th graders about teamwork both in sports and the classroom, being a positive influence in school, and not getting distracted from your goals. He also spoke about how if you see a friend or classmate struggling in the classroom lend them a hand.

Over 90 Pounds Of Marijuana Seized From Traffic Stop


This morning at approx. 1047 hrs, an Officer with the Interdiction Unit made a traffic stop in the 1000 block of Central Frwy. Jose Almaguer, 50 years old, was driving a dark blue Hyundai Sonta. During a search of the vehicle, Officers located a total of 6 bags all containing large amounts of marijuana. Total weigh of the marijuana was over 90 pounds. Almaguer’s car was impounded for seizure and he was arrested for Possession of Marijuana over/50 pounds (Felony).

WFPD Seeking Victims in a Quinceañera Scam


Detectives with the Wichita Falls Police Department’s Financial Crime Unit received information by Bexar County that 40 year old resident of Arlington, Moises Reyes-Leal (aka El Porky), is under investigation by the San Antonio PD, Texas Attorneys Office, and Ellis County Sheriffs Office for fraud related to scamming people with the promise of planning and holding their Quinceañera and then fleeing after payment was made.

Information was also obtained that Reyes-Leal was falsely marketing advertising.  The information was that Reyes-Leal had set up in Wichita Falls and was leasing and using FM 96.3 as a base of operation.

Reyes-Leal was arrested for a theft of service warrant from a previous investigation from Ellis County.

If any local residents believe they have fallen victim to Reyes-Leal please call Detective Tony Ramirez at 761-8885.

Man Arrested Burglarizing A Business


On 05-16-15, 0852hrs, Officers responded to 1712 5th St. in reference to a possible burglary that was occurring, or had occurred. Officers located where someone had removed a board to gain entry into the business. Once inside Officers located and detained Marshal Tanner, 27y/o w/m. They found him hiding behind a roll out trash can. Tanner had emptied the contents of the trash can and filled it with tools and copper wire from the business. He had also pulled an A/C unit from its window cage and had property from the business in his pocket. Tanner was arrested and charged with Burglary of a Building and Felony Theft of Copper wire.

WFPD Participating in TxDOT Click It Or Ticket Campaign


The Wichita Falls Police Department is participating in this years TxDOT Click It or Ticket Campaign which runs from May 18th through May 31st. We will have additional Officers on the street focusing on Occupant Protection for all passengers in vehicles. WFPD has partnered with TxDOT’s Click It or Ticket since 2002. Last year WFPD alone issued 273 seatbelt citations and 13 child safety seat citations during the campaign.

Here Is the Law

Texas law now requires drivers and all passengers in vehicles to be secured by a safety belt.

Any child under the age of 8 must be restrained in an approved child passenger safety seat unless taller than 4 feet, nine inches.

Safety Seat Guidelines

Safety belts are designed for adults, not children. Use a booster seat to lift your child up and prevent severe injuries in a crash.

Please remember the following guidelines when buying the proper seat for your child:

Birth-1 Year, Up to 35 Pounds

  • Use a rear-facing seat until your baby reaches the weight limit or height limit of the seat.
  • Secure the chest clip even with your baby’s armpits.
  • Fasten harness straps snugly against your baby’s body.

1-4 Years, 20 to 40 Pounds

  • Use a forward-facing seat for as long as the safety seat manufacturer recommends it.
  • Fasten harness straps snugly against your child’s body.
  • Secure the chest clip even with your child’s armpits.
  • Latch the tether strap to the corresponding anchor if your vehicle has one.

4-8 Years, Over 40 Pounds

  • Use a booster seat.
  • Fasten the lap belt across your child’s thighs and hips, not stomach.
  • Strap the diagonal belt across the chest to rest on the shoulder, not the neck.


19 Year Old Arrested For Burglary of Numerous Vehicles


On 05-17-15, at 0631hrs, Officers responded to the area of the 3200blk of Carol Ann in reference to a caller stating he was chasing a subject who had just burglarized his vehicle. The caller then lost sight of the suspect but was able to give a very detailed description.  The suspect vehicle was found running and unlocked in the 3200blk of Carol Ann. Officers found, through a connection to the registered owner of the suspect vehicle, a possible suspect address in the 1500 block of Garfield. They responded and found the suspect, Eli Hatfield (090395), sitting inside the residence. The front window to the residence had been recently smashed out. Officers contacted the resident who advised Hatfield did not have permission to be inside the residence. Seven vehicles were found to have been burglarized in the area and property from those burglaries was found in Hatfield’s possession. Eli Hatfield was arrested and charged with 7 counts of Burglary of a Vehicle and Criminal Trespass.