Officer: Job is overshadowed by potential for danger

By Staff
Tracy B. Cieniewicz, Hartselle Enquirer
Lt. Linda Fox of the Hartselle Police Department Patrol Division prides herself on knowing the faces and names of the Hartselle citizens she is sworn to protect.
Fox explained the 18 pounds of gear each officer wears when on duty, including a bulletproof vest, OC/CS spray, an expandable ASP baton, and a 40-caliber Glock 22 handgun with a 15-round magazine.
The OC/CS spray, like mace, is used to halt dangerous situations by causing pain and inflammation of the eyes and sinuses.
HPD are required to handcuff each person they arrest and are also required to wear a Level 2 bulletproof vest, which is designed to protect against the majority of weapons officers encounter.
HPD patrol cars are equipped with radar, an in-car mobile video recorder and a laptop computer that alerts patrol to outstanding warrants, driver’s license and license plate verification, and information on who patrol should be on the lookout for in connection to various crimes.
Calls for service include domestic disturbances, fights, traffic accidents, bolo’s (Be On the Look Out), checking on the welfare of citizens, supporting the fire, utilities and street departments, assisting citizens, answering alarm calls, assisting mentally ill persons, providing funeral escorts, and making reports on calls.
Fox said HPD responds to an average of three to four traffic accidents per day.
While the intersection of Highways 31 and 36 is the largest intersection in Hartselle, Fox believes the intersection of Curry Street and Highway 31 in front of Wal-Mart Supercenter to be the most dangerous.
Officer initiated activity is another means for the patrol division to meet their goals in protecting the city. Officer initiated activity includes security checks on businesses and neighborhoods, serving warrants, surveillance, traffic stops and community oriented policing.

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