In Memory: WFPD Officer Russell C. Scott

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WFPD Officer Russell C. Scott

On November 27, 1958 Wichita Falls Police Officer Russell C. Scott was struck and killed by a vehicle while directing traffic at the scene of accident at the intersection of Hampstead Street and Milby Street. Another car entered the intersection and struck a disabled truck at a high rate of speed. The truck was pushed into Officer Scott, knocking him 54-feet.

Officer Scott was taken to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries the following day. The driver of the vehicle that caused the accident was sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined $25.

Officer Scott had been with the agency for only 11 months. He was survived by his wife.

May we never forget.

Holiday Safety Tips

thanksgiving (1)With Thanksgiving just a couple of days away the Wichita Falls Police Department would like to remind everyone of a few safety tips to help make this time more enjoyable.

If you are traveling:

  • Please give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination.
  • Do not drive tired.  If you become drowsy, find a safe place to stop and take a break.
  • Always, wear your safety belt.
  • Be prepared to slow down.  The road conditions can quickly change due to weather or traffic congestion.

If you are shopping:

  • Always, be mindful of your surroundings.
  • Lock your car; Take your keys; Hide your belongings.
  • If you are shopping at night, try to park in well-lighted areas.
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash.
  • Keep a record of all your credit card numbers and contact your credit card company immediately if one is stolen.

At home:

  • If you are going to be gone for an extended period of time have a neighbor collect your mail.
  • Have various inside lights on multiple timers.
  • Ensure that all your doors and windows are locked and secured.
  • If someone knocks at your door that you do not know you Do Not have to answer it.

These are just a few simple crime prevention techniques that can help ensure that everyone has a safe and happy holiday season.

Bus Stop Safety

6VW35IYZPVFQRMFA2GVVUJG3WYWith the ending of Daylight Saving Time on Sunday, November 4th, clocks will be set back an hour.  With this adjustment it will cause some students to have to wait for the school bus in the dark. Because of that the Wichita Falls Police Department would like to remind students, parents and drivers of a few bus stop safety tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Bus Stop Safety

The greatest risk to your child is not riding a bus, but approaching or leaving one. Before your child goes back to school or starts school for the first time, it’s important for you and your child to know traffic safety rules. Teach your child to follow these practices to make school bus transportation safer.

FOR PARENTS

Safety Starts at the Bus Stop

Your child should arrive at the bus stop at least five minutes before the bus is scheduled to arrive. Visit the bus stop and show your child where to wait for the bus: at least three giant steps (six feet) away from the curb. Remind your child that the bus stop is not a place to run or play.

Get On and Off Safely

When the school bus arrives, your child should wait until the bus comes to a complete stop, the door opens, and the driver says it’s okay before approaching the bus door. Your child should use the handrails to avoid falling.

Use Caution Around the Bus

Your child should never walk behind a school bus. If your child must cross the street in front of the bus, tell him/her to walk on a sidewalk or along the side of the street to a place at least five giant steps (10 feet) in front of the bus before crossing. Your child should also make eye contact with the bus driver before crossing to make sure the driver can see him/her. If your child drops something near the school bus, like a ball or book, the safest thing is for your child to tell the bus driver right away. Your child should not try to pick up the item, because the driver might not be able to see him/her.

FOR DRIVERS

Make school bus transportation safer for everyone by following these practices:

  • When backing out of a driveway or leaving a garage, watch out for children walking or bicycling to school.
  • When driving in neighborhoods with school zones, watch out for young people who may be thinking about getting to school, but may not be thinking of getting there safely.
  • Slow down. Watch for children walking in the street, especially if there are no sidewalks in neighborhood.
  • Watch for children playing and congregating near bus stops.
  • Be alert. Children arriving late for the bus may dart into the street without looking for traffic.
  • Learn and obey the school bus laws in your State, as well as the “flashing signal light system” that school bus drivers use to alert motorists of pending actions:
    • Yellow flashing lights indicate the bus is preparing to stop to load or unload children. Motorists should slow down and prepare to stop their vehicles.
    • Red flashing lights and extended stop arms indicate the bus has stopped and children are getting on or off. Motorists must stop their cars and wait until the red lights stop flashing, the extended stop-arm is withdrawn, and the bus begins moving before they can start driving again.

 

Halloween Safety Tips

halloween-safety-tips-header2It’s almost Halloween and that means kids will be out Trick-or-Treating.  Here are some safety tips to help make the night more enjoyable for everyone:

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Swords, knives, and other costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible.

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Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups or with a trusted adult.

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Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you.

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Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats you eat.

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Hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you. Always WALK and don’t run from house to house.

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Always test make-up in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime to prevent possible skin and eye irritation.

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Look both ways before crossing the street. Use established crosswalks wherever possible.

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Lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses.

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Only walk on sidewalks whenever possible, or on the far edge of the road facing traffic to stay safe.

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Wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.

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Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats made by strangers.

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Enter homes only if you’re with a trusted adult. Only visit well-lit houses. Never accept rides from strangers.

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Never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

In Memory: WFPD Officer Hugh S. Fuller

police-silhouette-1Around 2:00 p.m. on October 22, 1927 Wichita Falls Police Motorcycle Officer Hugh S. Fuller was en route to a vehicle accident at Ninth and Broad streets. Just one block from the accident scene he struck the side of a motorist making a turn in the intersection of Ninth and Bluff streets. The motorist was en route to the hospital to see his seriously ill wife. He accompanied the injured officer to the hospital. Officer Fuller died one hour later at 3:00 p.m. at Wichita Falls Clinic Hospital. He was 20 years old.

Officer Fuller had been a night patrolman and had transferred to the motorcycle unit several weeks earlier. He had been a well known motorcycle racer since he was a teenager and had won many awards. Officer Fuller’s wrecked motorcycle was placed in the lobby of the police station for many years.

Officer Fuller was survived by his wife, Sallie, and his parents. They had a daughter born on August 5, 1927 who died two days later. He was buried in the Riverside Cemetery in Wichita Falls.

May we never forget.

SCAM ALERT

Scam AlertRecently, some local residents have received a phone call from someone claiming to be a “detective” from our agency. The “detective” is phishing for information and the caller ID is showing 940-720-5000, which is our non-emergency number. However, we want you to know that no legitimate call will ever come from our agency showing that number. If you receive a similar call, please do not give the scammers any information and hang up the phone.

If you feel that you have already been a victim of this scam, please call our Financial Crimes Unit at 940-761-7762.

WFPD Releases 2018 4th Quarter and Year End TxDOT Comprehensive STEP Grant Stats

636210405772280198-WFPD-STEPThe largest portion of traffic safety funding from TxDOT is used for the Selective Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP) projects, which pay for overtime activities by local law enforcement to reduce the incidence of speeding, driving while intoxicated, failure to use occupant restraint systems, and intersection traffic control violations. Organizations eligible for STEP funds include the Texas Department of Public Safety (TXDPS), sheriff’s offices, constable’s offices and community police departments.

The Wichita Falls Police Department has finalized the 4th Quarter FY 2018 (July – September 2018) TxDOT Comprehensive STEP Grant Stats:

Adult Seatbelt Citations – 81
Child Safety Seats – 3
Intersection Violations – 231
Speeding – 426
Distracted Driving (Cell Phones) – 13 
Other Violations – 147
Arrests – 3
Vehicles Impounded – 8
Hours Worked – 350.5
Miles Driven – 2,721

The Wichita Falls Police Department has finalized the TxDOT Comprehensive STEP Grant Stats for the fiscal year starting at October 2017 and going through September 2018

Adult Seatbelt Citations – 322
Child Safety Seats – 17
Intersection Violations – 769
Speeding – 1,809
Distracted Driving (Cell Phones) – 45 
Other Violations – 527
Arrests – 9
Vehicles Impounded – 34
Hours Worked – 1,386.1
Miles Driven – 10,948
The WFPD is currently participating in FY 2019 Comprehensive STEP Grant, which runs from October 1, 2018 through September 30th, 2019.

Coffee with a Cop event to be held at local coffee house.

coffee with a cop1On Friday, October 5th, officers with the Wichita Falls Police Department and community members will come together in an informal, neutral space to discuss community issues, build relationships, and drink coffee.

Community members are invited to attend. The event is from 8 am to 9:30 am on Friday, October 5th at Frank & Joe’s Coffee House, at 2919 Bob Ave  in Parker Square. Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for community members to ask questions and learn more about their department.

The majority of contacts law enforcement has with the public happen during emergencies, or emotional situations. Those situations are not always the most effective times for relationship building. Some community members may feel that officers are unapproachable on the street. Coffee with a Cop breaks down those barriers and allows for a relaxed, one-on-one interaction.

We hope that community members will feel comfortable to ask questions, bring concerns, or simply get to know our officers.  These interactions are the foundation of community partnerships.

Coffee with a Cop is a national initiative supported by The United States Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services.

The program aims to advance the practice of community policing through improving relationships between police officers and community members one cup of coffee at a time.

Which of these life saving skills do you know?

unnamed (3)As part of National Preparedness Month, the Wichita Falls Police Department wants to encourage you to learn skills that could help to save your life and the lives of those around you in the event of a disaster.

Remember you are the help until help arrives! Depending on the severity of a disaster, it may take days or even weeks for government resources to reach you. You may have to rely on your family and neighbors.

Which of these life saving skills do you know?

-I know first aid & CPR

-I know how to use a fire extinguisher

-I know how to shut of utilities for my home

-I know which types of natural disasters may impact my community and am adequately prepared for these events

You can find more information about life saving skills here: https://www.ready.gov/safety-skills. If there are other skills you’d like to recommend to your neighbors, or if you know of resources available to help your neighbors build these skills, please reply in the comments.

Will you be ready to help your neighbors if a disaster hits Wichita Falls?

unnamed (2)September is National Preparedness Month.

Disasters don’t plan ahead, but you can! The Wichita Falls Police Department encourages you to take the following steps to make sure you, your family, and your neighbors are ready.

1. Create an emergency plan. Put together a plan with your family and your neighbors by discussing these questions. What is your shelter plan? What is your evacuation route? What is your communication plan?

2. Consider the specific needs of your family and your neighbors. Does anyone have special dietary and/or medical needs? What will you do with your pets? Are there people in your neighborhood with disabilities?

3. Review your emergency plan with your family and share it with your neighbors on Nextdoor.

4. Practice your plan with your family and your neighbors.

In the event of an emergency, the Wichita Falls Police Department will use Nextdoor, along with other communication tools, to keep your neighborhood as informed as possible.

If you haven’t done so already, consider inviting more of your neighbors to join by having Nextdoor send postcard invitations to your nearby neighbors. You can find instructions for doing so here: http://bit.ly/NextdoorPostcards. You can find more resources here: https://www.ready.gov/make-a-plan.