New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 4, 1991, New Braunfels, Texas
Page 6Herald-Ze/fungf, New Braunfels, Texas
Tuesday, June 4, 1991CRIME WATCH NEW BRAUNFELS
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The City of New Braunfels is going to the dogs — police dogs that is!
City Manager Paul Grohman states the story of the Dog Program in New Braunfels:
“When I came to New Braunfels three (3) years ago as City Manager, I felt we had a need of a canine program, not only to search for illegal drugs, but also as a safety precaution in building searches and routine patrol duties. Police dogs have ' saved innumerable lives and amounts of properties because they have special skills that humans simply do not have. The dogs also have the ability to locate well hidden-drugs quickly thus saving valuable time and increasing its effectiveness of the search because they have the ability to locate drugs that humans cannot. In case of a large building that has had a brcak-in, an officer is on an unlcvel playing field in knowing where a criminal may be. However, you can be sure the criminal will know where the police are when they arrive. Dogs, with their keen senses, make this a much better match-up in the struggle against crime.”
“We hope to be able to work with the schools in their drug interdiction process. They have been forced to use private contractors in the past because services have not been available locally. However, we feel we can provide these services on a
regular basis at a much less cost to the taxpayers. Like the D.A.R.E. Program, this type of cooperation between the schools and the City benefit all of our citizens.”
When Chief Dick Headcn took over the reins of the Department in August 1990, one of our first focuses was the beginning of the Canine Unit. We now have Cpl. Spencer
Gremmer on patrol with his Canine Unit. Officers Steven Nicely and Scott Lange are currently training to have additional canine units on the street in the near future.
Chief Headen says, “The addition of the canine units adds a new dimension to law enforcement in New Braunfels. The dog’s ability to locate well-hidden drugs saves time and taxpayers’ money, thus making our fight against drugs more effective.”
“Canines can locate senior citizens and children that may have wandered off from home or they may track a burglar from a break-in to the thief s home.”
“We will be able to work a drug interdiction program now on IH 35. All of these benefits are now available as a result of the foresight and innovativeness of City Administration shown by allowing the police to build this unit.”
“This effort will go far in making our community a better place to live.”
Safe City Commission Coordinator Mike Grist states, ‘The Safe City Commission is in total support of the canine program at the New Braunfels Police Department. Not only does it give increased flexibility to the officers, but it offers an overall sense of security to the community as a whole.”
City Manager Paul Grohman adds, “It is our belief that pro-active law enforcement will keep our community a safe place to live. It is a challenge every day to come up with new programs to combat the ever changing ways criminals do business. We know the canine patrols will be an integral part of our Police Department’s future.”
The Roles and Goals of The Safe City Commission
A popular local bumper sticker reads “In New Braunfels is das lcben schocn.” Loosely translated, it means “in New Braunfels the living is good.” The members of the Safe City Commission believe that slogan also sets out our goal. We believe by working towards the reduction of crime, the residents of this city will feel more secure on the streets and in their homes, resulting in New Braunfels continuing to be a good place to live.
New Braunfels has not been immune to the escalation of crime that has affected the state and nation. Law enforcement officials understand the fight to combat crime cannot be waged solely by the police. Community involvement is critical in reducing crime levels in any city or town. Realizing the need for the support and involvement of the citizens led to the creation of the Safe City Commission.
Now in its third year of existence, the Safe City Commission was established by the New Braunfels City Council lo advise and assisi the city council and the New Braunfels Police Department in matters pertaining to the reduction of crime. A unique organization in municipal government, the commission members arc appointed by the mayor for terms of varying lengths. The chairman is elected by the commission members. This year I have the honor of serving in dial capacity.
In addition to the commission members, a full lime director exists lo carry out the programs of the Safe City Commission. Our current director is Mike Grist.
The mission of die Safe City Commission has resulted in the initiation of a variety of programs, all aimed al promoting a safe community and in so doing helping to reduce crime. Neighborhood watch programs, discussed in depth elsewhere in this newsletter, are the foundation of the commission success. It is die philosophy of the S. r<* City Com-nussion that each resident s awareness of his neighbors and neighborhood is critical in developing safer neighborhoods. Many successes have been achieved, but more neighborhood watch programs are needed. The Safe Cay
Commission continues its efforts to assist in the creation and continuance of such programs.
To promote neighborhood awareness, the Safe City Commission has annually sponsored a local “Night Out” in which citizens are urged to turn on their porch lights and to make an effort to meet neighbors. The program has been highly successful.
The Safe City Commission is particularly proud of its role in obtaining 911 service for New Braunfels and Comal County. Enhanced 911 service went online in September, 1990, and has been a tremendous success in reducing emergency response time.
In our attempt to keep the city council and police apprised of the concerns of its residents, input from the citizens is important. The Safe City Commission sponsors meetings throughout the city periodically to talk to residents and learn their concerns. Through these meetings problems with door-to-door salespersons came lo light. The commission formulated a proposal for a no soliciting ordinance which was ultimately passed by the city council.
Citizen comments and suggestions are constantly solicited. Please contact Mike Grist, any commission member, or mc if the Safe City Commission can be of assistance.
The Safe City Commission is confident die future of New Braunfels is a bright one. Statistics showing recent reductions in arca crime are encouraging and are a tribute lo lite efforts of local law enforcement agencies as well as die citizens of New Braunfels.
Much, however, remains to be done. In die upcoming rnondis die Safe City Commission will be continuing its efforts to assist in die reduction of crime and by diose measures increasing citizen safety. This newsletter and future editions, are a part of diose efforts. Your support arid involvement are integral to die success of die commission.
With ye it help, New Braunfels will continue to be a city where “...das lcben isl schoen."
Ron F. Fricsenhalin Chairman
Safe City Commission
Latch Key Children
You and your children should agree on some house rules about what they will do when they are alone. Some of these rules may involve:
♦How long they may talk on the phone.
♦How much TV they watch and which programs.
♦Whether they should call you when they get home, or if they decide to leave the house.
♦What chores they should do before going out to play.
♦Setting aside a time for homework.
♦What snacks they may have.
♦Kitchen rules, including whether they may use the stove, other appliances, or sharp knives.
One of the most serious concerns for children alone is their personal safety, but it’s also the arca where planning and forethought can do the most good.
For example, you can protect your children from strangers by having a secret family password. Tell your children never to believe a stranger who claims to know you if he or she doesn’t know the password.
Make sure your house address is posted on the house so it can be easily seen from the street, lf there is an emergency, rescue workers need to be able to find the house as quickly as possible.
Dealing with strangers is one arca where children need lo be especially cautious. There are four basic safety rules children should know about strangers.
♦Don’t take anything from a stranger.
♦Don’t talk with a stranger.
♦Don’t go anywhere with a stranger.
♦Don’t get close lo a stranger.
Tile fourth rule, don’t get close to a stranger, refers to “the circle of safety”. The circle is about four feet in each direction around the child. You can demonstrate this with a short stick with a padded glove on lite end of it. Have your child walk around you. lf you can touch them with the slick, they’re too close.
Another aspect of safety and strangers is door safely. Children need to know whom they may open die door for, even if a parent is at home. One idea is lo make a list of the people who are allowed in the home and post it on die door. Children also should have someplace where they can see who is outside widiout being seen. A peephole in die door is a good idea arid you may wish to keep a footstool near die door so the child can reach die peephole. The best peepholes have a viewing radius of 180 degrees.
Teach children not to tell a stranger when diey are home alone. One idea is lo have children use “safe statements” such as, “My
mother can’t come to the door right now. Can you come back later?” You also may wish to arrange for a neighbor to accept deliveries, keep a spare key to your house, and be available to help your children when you are not at home.
Other safety tips for children include not walking alone, especially after dark. Children should not wear clothing with their name on it. Being able to call a child by name is an easy way for criminals to gain the child’t trust.
Here are some things each child should know for those times when they are alone:
♦Basic first aid and where the first aid supplies are kept.
♦Which doors and windows should be kept locked and how to lock them. Which outside lights to turn on after dark and which curtains should be drawn. If an outside door has the kind of deadbolt lock that requires a key to open on lite inside, be sure a key is kept near the door.
♦What to do if there is dangerous weather. Your children should know which spot in the house is the safest in case of a tornado or other dangerous storm. Provide a transistor radio and show your children how to use it to obtain news bulletins on threatening weather. Children should also know how to take care of themselves in case a storm prevents you from coming home on time.
♦What to do if the power goes out. Show your children where you keep a flashlight. Teach older children where the fuse box is and how to change fuses or reset circuit breakers.
♦How to prepare a meal for themselves and safety rules for kitchen appliances and sharp knives.
♦How to control the thermostat.
♦ALWAYS KEEP LIQUOR, POISONS AND FIREARMS LOCKED UP!
This information is provided by the Safe City Commission located at 424 S. Casten Avenue, telephone number 625-3425.
The Biggest Party in America: Tuesday, August 6
For information on National Night Out call the Safe City Commission at 625-3425 or come by 424 S. Casten Ave. This is die time lo meet your neighbors and fight crime with odiers across the United Suites of America. Last year 8,140 communities from all 50 stales and 21.8 million people participated in different activities in dicir neighborhoods.
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