By Russell Hixson
STILLWATER, Okla. —
City and county law enforcement agencies hope to continue building their departments this year.
Stillwater Police Chief Ryan McCaghren said one of the main focuses will be completing an upgrade of computer systems. The system, called Public Safety Systems Inc., has a variety of modules for each city department and allows them to work together and communicate effectively.
“As technology changes you have to adjust and upgrade,” McCaghren said. The last upgrade to the computer systems was approximately 10 years ago.
In the wake of the December shooting at Newtown, Conn., school Sandy Hook Elementary, McCaghren said officers will receive extensive training for rapid response situations when law enforcement needs to get to a scene and deal with a situation quickly. He said the training will be done with other law enforcement agencies in Payne County to ensure a coordinated effort should the need arise.
“It’s really key that everyone has the same training,” McCaghren said.
Stillwater police will also continue to hire staff. McCaghren said this isn’t so much to expand the force but get staff numbers back up where they should be. He said the department will be hiring more dispatchers, patrol officers, investigators and detention officers.
The department will also undergo the accreditation process with the Oklahoma Association of Chiefs of Police. The organization has a lengthy set of standards and accredit police departments every three years.
Sheriff hopes to expand
success of inmate garden
Payne County Sheriff R.B. Hauf said his department is still in the early stages of planning the next year but have already decided some projects.
Hauf said the success of jail programs like the inmate garden have encouraged him to try more. Hauf said he plans to utilize inmates for cleaning up county roads.
The department also will continue upgrading vehicles with computers and software. The expensive upgrades have been happening slowly due to cost, but Hauf said he hopes to have all vehicles equipped this year. The upgrades allow deputies to research vehicle and license information from their vehicles as well as receive information from dispatch. Hauf said this saves time and keep officers safer.
Hauf also plans to complete some capital improvement at the departments fairgrounds facility. This includes paving some of the gravel and repairing the carwash bay.
With a massive increase in applications for gun carrying licenses, Hauf said the department may invest in another fingerprint station. Obtaining applicants’ fingerprints is part of the license process. Hauf said the department is processing 10 to 20 applications each day.