Vehicle Burglaries: See Something, Say Something

Vehicle-BurglaryThe Wichita Falls Police Department has received numerous burglary of a vehicle reports where the victim vehicle was unlocked. The WFPD would like to remind people that one of the best ways to help prevent from becoming a victim of vehicle burglary is to simply lock your vehicles, and a special reminder to not leave unsecured firearms in your vehicle. Also, if you see something or someone suspicious in your neighborhoods, contact police.

Take, Lock, Hide. The basic crime fighting tool to help reduce vehicle burglaries.

Lock your vehicle. It takes seconds to break a window, but doing so makes noise – and criminals hate making noise.

Hide valuables from sight, or take items with you. If a criminal doesn’t see anything, they’re less likely to break in, and will move on. Park in areas that are not secluded. Well lit parking lots, with good “sight lines”, make it more likely your vehicle is visible to the general public. Aftermarket car stereos; consider models with removable face plates.  Take the face plate with you when you leave your vehicle. Record serial numbers of property you may leave inside your vehicle. If stolen, it makes it more likely the suspect, if he tries to pawn, will be identified.

There is no 100% fool-proof way to prevent all crime. You can make yourself less likely to be a victim of a burglary. Simply locking your vehicle and removing property from inside is half the battle.

Local Man Arrested on Multiple Felony Charges to Include Burglary and Motor Vehicle Theft

Downey, Ryan

Ryan Downey

On Monday April 8th at approximately 8:45 am officers with the Wichita Falls Police Department were dispatched to the 4800 block of Johnson Rd in reference to a possible burglary.  Upon arrival officers spoke with the victim who stated that 22 year old Ryan Downey forced entry into her apartment, assaulted her, stole a necklace, took her car keys and drove off with her 2013 black Chevrolet Impala.

WFPD Officers observed a 2013 black Chevrolet Impala driving in the area of McNiel and Call Field and attempted to initiate a traffic stop.  The driver of the vehicle, who was later identified as Downey, refused to pull over and began to speed away in an apparent attempt to evade police. Downey struck a curb in the 4300 block of Seymour Rd at which time he jumped out of the vehicle and attempted to flee on foot.  He was caught by officers in the 4300 block of Seymour Hwy.

Downey was transported to the Wichita County jail without further incident where he was charged with burglary of a habitation, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and evading.

Wichita Falls man arrested for threatening officers.

simsOn March 18, at 5:15 pm, officers with the Wichita Falls Police Department were dispatched to a residence in the 1200 blk of Kenley for a disturbance.    The parties separated after  the situation was calmed down.  Some went inside the residence and the suspect, Tyler Sims, began to walk away.  As the officers walked back to their vehicles  Sims turned around and came walking back to the residence.  Sims then pulled out his cell phone and called 911 asking for two new officers because he was about to kill the two that were there.  The officers, overhearing this threat, arrested Sims after a brief physical struggle.  Sims was charged with Terroristic Threat Against a Public Servant.

WFPD Motors Unit Brings Home Top Honors From 6th Annual COTPMCO

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Members of the Wichita Falls Police Department’s Motorcycle Unit participated in the 6th Annual COTPMCO (Capital of TX Police Motorcycle Chute Out) held in Buda, TX between February 27 and March 2nd.

They competed against several other agencies and came home with multiple top finishes to include coming in First place for the Overall Team Award.

Along with competing the officers attending we were able to meet with numerous agencies from several different states, sharing training ideas and tactics, along with looking at the latest in technology related to police motorcycle operation.

Congratulations to all those who competed.

First Place Overall Team Award

Sgt. Van Dotson

Officer Justin Whisenhunt

Officer Clint Halloway

Officer Danny Castillo

 

Third Place Team Challenge Event

Sgt. Van Dotson

Officer Justin Whisenhunt

Officer Clint Halloway

Officer Chris Cozart

 

**Individual Awards by Category**

 

Metric Bike – Expert Class

2nd Place – Officer Chris Cozart

6th Place – Sgt. Van Dotson

7th Place – Officer Justin Whisenhunt

8th Place – Officer Clint Halloway

11th Place – Officer Danny Castillo

12th Place – Officer C.J. Mauck

13th Place – Officer Kody McBride

17th Place – Sgt. Leland Wright

 

Metric Bike – Novice Class

3rd Place – Officer Jessie Whitehead

5th Place – Officer Dustin Moffett

7th Place – Officer Danny Atnip

Coffee with a Cop this Friday.

coffee-with-a-cop1Members of the community are invited to attend the
Coffee with a Cop event this Friday, February 22nd from 7:30 am to 8:30 am at McDonald’s, located at 1412 Holliday St. Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for community members to ask questions and meet the officers that serve the community.
 
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.

Local McDonald’s to host Coffee with a Cop event.

coffee-with-a-cop1

On Friday, February 22nd,  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.

All  members of the community are invited to attend. The event will be Friday, February 22nd  from 7:30 am to 8:30 am  at McDonald’s, located at 1412 Holliday St. Coffee with a Cop provides a unique opportunity for community members to ask questions and learn more about their department and officers.

The majority of contacts law enforcement has with the public occur  during emergencies, or emotionally stressful times. Those situations are not always the most effective times for relationship building. Some community members may even 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.

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.

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

 

Have a Safe & Happy New Year

Fireworks explosion. Happy new year 2019 event banner. Pyrotechnics sparks. Festive firework celebration vector backgroundAs we get closer to celebrating New Year, the Wichita Falls Police Department would like to remind everyone of the City Ordinance prohibiting the use or possession of fireworks.

The possession of all fireworks is illegal in the city limits of Wichita Falls. If you are found to be in possession of or discharging fireworks you can be subject to a fine. It is important that the public recognize the potential dangers in the use and handling of fireworks.

Please celebrate the New Year safely and responsibly!  Here are some other safety tips for the holiday:

  • The consequences of drunk driving are devastating. If you do drink, please have a designated driver and make those plans ahead of time.
  • Try to avoid being on the road between the hours of 8pm – 2am. Auto accidents due to alcohol consumption are the highest during that time.
  • Take the keys if you have a friend who is too drunk to get behind the wheel. Help your friend with a ride home.
  • If you are hosting a party make sure your guests have a designated driver or a way to take them home from your party.

Have a happy and safe New Year!

Don’t Be Left Out in the Cold

Vehicle exhaust pipe in winterAs the morning temperatures continue to get colder the Wichita Falls Police Department would like to remind drivers not to leave their cars running and unattended.  In most cases not only is this against the law but it will also increase your chances of becoming a victim of theft or burglary.

There are a few simple steps you can take to reduce the risk of losing your vehicle or belongings to an opportunistic thief:

  • STAY WITH THE CAR. It’s better to be cold for a few minutes in your car while it warms up than to be left in the cold while the thief drives it away.
  • LOCK THE DOORS. If unattended locking your doors will decrease the opportunity for the criminal to strike.
  • TAKE YOUR KEYS.  Don’t hide your keys on or in the vehicle; thieves know where to look.
  • HIDE YOUR BELONGINGS.  If leaving property in the vehicle hiding it will help reduce the risk of a burglary or vehicle theft.

For more information on the law click here.

Re-packaging Identity Theft scam

Scam AlertThe Wichita Falls Police Department’s Financial Crimes Unit would like to inform people of the dangers of a re-packaging Identity Theft scam.

An individual(s) will compromise the victim’s identity and begin to purchase items in their name.  Often times they will have the items that were fraudulently purchased shipped to the victim’s address.  The suspects will then track the packages and when they are delivered/left at the victim’s home the suspect(s) will then simply go up and take the packages.  Often times the victim will never know their identity has been compromised until it is too late.

If you believe that you are the victim of identity theft or have any information regarding possible suspects involved in identity theft you are encouraged to contact the WFPD at 720-5000.

You can get a free credit report by going to FTC.gov – https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0155-free-credit-reports?utm_source=takeaction

You can also file an identity theft report at https://www.identitytheft.gov/?utm_source=takeaction

This is a serious situation which occurs on a daily basis all over the United States. Take it seriously and check your information.

Have Coffee with a Cop tomorrow

coffee with a cop1Come on out tomorrow October 5th from 8 am to 9:30 am to Frank & Joe’s Coffee House located at 2919 Bob Ave in Parker Square to celebrate national Coffee with a Cop week.  Meet officers with your department, drink coffee, ask questions and build relationships.