Culver-Stockton Hosts Fundraiser for Fallen Officers

Charity Bell | Multimedia Journalist at WGEM​​

Culver-Stockton College students and community members gathered Sunday for their 12-hour Fallen Officer Project fundraiser.

Participants walked around the school’s track from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. to honor law enforcement officers who lost their lives in the line of duty as well as to raise money for various foundations.

Fallen Officer Project director and Culver-Stockton professor Seth McBride said he personally understands the risks associated with law enforcement and said it’s important those lost in the line of duty are recognized.

“I’m a commissioned officer with the Lewis County Sheriff’s Department on top of what I do here at Culver and it is something to recognize the men and women throughout the country who have given their lives to their communities,” McBride said.

Culver-Stockton junior Jordan Arbas also took part in this year’s project.

“You know there’s a lot of negativity around officers in the world today and so I wanted to learn a different perspective,” he said. “Taking a class from a reserve officer and also learning about the family stories, it’s just a whole new perspective that you’re looking at.”

Some participants said they know how it feels to lose a loved one doing their job.

Betsey Browning said she and her grandchildren walked for her son Casey Shoemate, a sheriff’s deputy in Miller County, Missouri, who died in 2018 in a head-on collision while responding to a structure fire.

“It’s really, really important to me that we don’t forget the sacrifices that not only my baby made, but that the other families made as well,” she said.

McBride said they raised a total of $5,425 for two law enforcement benefit foundations. Supporting Heroes helps support families of fallen officers while Who’s House Our House works to bridges the gap between communities and law enforcement through sports.

Browning said the effort made by the CSC community means the world to families going through pain she knows too well.

“Without these organizations that these young people are supporting, we as family members would not survive,” she said.

McBride says although they exceeded their original goal of raising $5,000 you can still donate to the Fallen Officer Project.

Click here to watch the news report.

April Is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Missouri

​From Gov. Mike Parson ~

As a former law enforcement officer, I understand the devastating impact abuse and neglect can have on a child’s life. It is critical that we continue to raise awareness about child abuse prevention and remind Missourians that children are relying on us to protect them.

I also want to thank the many groups and organizations across the state that provide vital resources to families throughout the year to help keep our children safe.

The Missouri Department of Social Services asks Missourians to be especially attentive to the safety and wellbeing of children during COVID-19 and strongly encourages anyone who suspects child abuse or neglect to call the toll-free hotline at 1-800-392-3738.

The Missouri Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline is answered 24-hours a day, every day, all year round. Callers can report anonymously.

Reporting a concern about a child can connect a family with the support and help they need to keep the child safe at home. Ensuring parents and caregivers have the knowledge, skills, support, and resources they need to care for children are paramount to reducing the risk of child abuse and neglect.

Often, the efforts of local communities and organizations make it possible for families to become stronger and the home safer for the child.​​

Health and Wellness for the Thin Blue Line

Understanding Macronutrients

By Lindsay Chetelat, RD, CDN​ for Working Dog Magazine​

In a profession founded upon dedicating long hours to protect and serve others, it can be difficult for members of the law enforcement community to make themselv​​es a priority. It is all too often that the health and wellness of police officers fall to the wayside as they spend day in and day out working tirelessly to defend their communities against evil.

Optimal nutrition and physical fitness are unique in the law enforcement world. Their lives depend on being fit, yet there are many obstacles to achieve the level of fitness necessary for the job. This three-part nutrition and fitness series will be geared towards providing the information to overcome these obstacles and build the foundation for lifelong health and wellness. The first installment in this issue will detail the ins and outs of macronutrients, while the second and third installments will encompass hydration and fueling for exercise, respectively.

Macronutrients – What you need to know: 

Macronutrients are the components in the diet that provide energy, or calories.
There are three macronutrients: carbohydrate, protein, and fat. Carbohydrate and protein provide four calories/gram and fat provides 9 calories/gram.
Each of these macronutrients confer a unique benefit to the proper functioning of the human body.
There are foods and beverages in each of these macronutrient categories that you should limit or avoid.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are chains of simple sugar building blocks that the body prefers to burn for energy. Examples of “short” chain carbohydrates include lactose, which is found in milk, and sucrose, which is table sugar.  “Long” chain carbohydrates can be found in starches, such as bread, pasta, and rice.  Regardless of the chain length, all carbohydrates are broken down into the basic sugar building blocks to be used as fuel for your brain and muscles.

Fiber is an indigestible form of carbohydrate that is found in plant based foods. It has beneficial implications in heart and gastrointestinal health. Fiber helps you feel fuller longer, and therefore proves to be an essential tool in weight loss.

Carbohydrate is stored in the body as glycogen in the liver and muscle. As needed, the body breaks down glycogen and releases a simple sugar building block called glucose. Glycogen stored in the muscles is readily available for use during exercise, while glycogen in the liver is used to maintain normal glucose levels in the blood and provide fuel for the brain.

Based on Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook, the average 150-lb male has 1800 calories of carbohydrate stored in the body.  Of these 1800 calories, 1400 calories are stored in the muscle to be used during exercise, 320 calories are stored in the liver to be released into the bloodstream, and 80 calories exist in the plasma and bodily fluids (1).  This same man also has 60,000-100,000 calories of stored fat. Technically, this amount of calories would be sufficient to run hundreds of miles, but muscles need carbohydrate to function properly and fat cannot be used as the sole fuel source (1). 

The American College of Sports Medicine cites carbohydrate needs for physically active adults as 3-5g/kg of body weight per day for low intensity or skill-based activities, 5-7g/kg for moderate exercise (~1 hour/day), 6-10g/kg for endurance exercise (1-3 hours/day), and 8-12g/kg for extreme exercise (>4-5 hours/day) (2). 

If you do not eat enough carbohydrate, this will translate to inadequate glycogen stores and, therefore, suboptimal mental and physical health.  Making sure the patrol car and the police canine are well fueled are essential job functions that ensure efficient and effective job performance. Maintaining a consistent intake of nutrient dense carbohydrates to promote adequate glycogen storage is of equal importance to the law enforcement officer.

Choosing the right carbohydrate sources also yields the benefit of receiving a wide variety of vitamins and minerals.  Vitamins and minerals, or micronutrients, play a multitude of roles including promoting optimal brain health and energy metabolism, and even reducing cancer risk in some cases.

The best sources of carbohydrate include whole grains, beans and legumes, starchy and non-starchy vegetables, and fruits. Dairy products are unique in that they are a good source of both carbohydrate and protein (see the protein section for more information). Carbohydrates dense in added sugar should be limited or avoided. These foods include sweets and desserts, soda, fruit juice cocktail, and fruit canned in syrup.

Protein

Protein is a building block for repair, growth, proper immune function, and many other vital bodily functions. The simple unit of protein is an amino acid.  Amino acids unite in different combinations to form protein chains of varying lengths. Our bodies can produce some amino acids, but we must obtain other amino acids from the food we eat (these are called essential amino acids).

Adequate protein intake is crucial for muscle growth and repair after enduring strenuous exercise. Equally as important is the role of protein in supporting basic bodily functions such as the immune system – your body’s defense mechanism against germs.  Protein rich foods also contain beneficial vitamins and minerals.  The body prefers to use protein for the functions described above.  If you do not consume adequate carbohydrate, your body will break down protein to produce glucose for energy, therefore distracting protein from its primary functions. Stay tuned for the third installment in this series on nutrient timing for recovery!

The average, inactive adult requires 0.8 g/kg of body weight per day, while active adults require 1.2-2.0 g/kg (2). The ultimate goal is to incorporate a variety of nutrient dense, lean protein sources throughout the day.  Excessive protein intake on a gram per kilogram of body weight basis or consumption of more than 20-25 grams of protein at one time does not equate to more gains (1). There is no storage capacity for protein in the body. The excess protein will be burned for energy or converted to triglycerides, a form of fat. Excessive protein intake also puts a person at risk for dehydration as the body seeks to eliminate urea, a waste product of protein breakdown.

Protein supplements have surged in popularity in the health and fitness world, but there is no evidence to indicate that providing these protein supplements in an already nutrient sufficient diet provides any benefit (1). Protein supplements can be used to achieve adequate protein intake in a person unable to meet their protein needs solely through food. 

Lean proteins are the best food sources to choose. While animal sources of protein are denser in protein and contain a complete amino acid profile, it is possible to meet protein needs through plant-based foods. These plant-based proteins must be consumed in larger quantities to match their animal-based counterparts.

People who completely avoid animal products (i.e. vegans) must compensate for the incomplete amino acid profile in plant-based proteins. Combining grains with beans or legumes and legumes with seeds will help ensure that a vegan obtains a complete amino acid profile (1). Adding soy products to all meals will also improve protein intake in this population (1).

High fat and highly processed proteins should be limited or avoided. These foods include meats with significant marbling, fried fish, fried chicken, highly processed cheeses (i.e. American cheese, Colby jack cheese), and highly processed deli meats (i.e. salami, bologna).

Fat

Fat is an energy packed nutrient that insulates the body and cushions our organs. Fat is important for the body to work properly in that it forms a protective layer around cell membranes and even serves as a carrier for vitamins A, D, E, and K. Choosing healthy fats (unsaturated fatty acids, including omega-3 fatty acids) has been shown to promote heart health. In contrast, high intakes of saturated fat and trans fat contribute to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Recent studies have even shown that saturated fat contributes to high cholesterol. For the most part, saturated fats are solid at room temperature and unsaturated fats are liquid at room temperature.

Fat sources to limit or avoid include deep fried foods, butter, hydrogenated shortenings, lard, coconut oil, palm oil, partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, full fat dairy and cheese products, and fatty red meats.

Fat intake at 20-35% of total caloric intake is regarded as healthy. Saturated fat should be limited to less than 7% of total calories and trans fats should be avoided at all costs. Food sources of fat should be primarily mono- and polyunsaturated fats.

The Registered Dietitian’s Macronutrients Tips for Success

A nutrient dense whole grain/starch should be consumed at every meal. For those involved in strength training and endurance exercise, half of your plate should be a nutrient dense whole grain or starch on tough workout or competition days.

Aim to include one green, red, yellow/orange, blue/purple, and white fruit and/or vegetable daily. Have fruits twice per day and vegetables at least three times per day.
Choose a lean protein at all meals and snacks. Protein intake should be evenly distributed throughout the day.
Include at least one healthy fat source at every meal.
Fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables have the same nutritional quality. If opting for canned vegetables, choose low-sodium and run water through them before cooking.  When selecting canned fruits, choose fruit canned in water, not syrup.

For someone who does not typically eat fruits, two cups per day of 100% fruit juice is an acceptable method to obtain adequate fruit intake.

Compare food and beverage products using the nutrition facts labels.

References
(1) Clark, N. Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook Fifth Edition. Champagne, IL: Human Kinetics; 2013.

(2) Nutrition and Athletic Performance. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 2016;48(3):543-568.http://journals.lww.com/acsm-msse/Fulltext/2016/03000/Nutrition_and_Athletic_Performance.25.aspx.   Accessed November 15, 2016.

About the Author

Lindsay Chetelat, RD, CDN is an NYC-based registered dietitian who focuses on empowering individuals to take charge of their bodies through utilization of evidence based nutrition guidelines and theory based physical training techniques. Her approach is rooted in helping others gain an appreciation for their bodies and creating a mindset that transformation is about the progress one is willing to make in their journey, not quick fixes.

The AAR: An Effective Assessment Tool for Law Enforcement

By Dan Murphy, Lieutenant in the Special Operations Section, Arlington County (VA) PD and Vice-Chair of IPSA’s Rescue Task Force Committee      

Today, most public safety organizations struggle to procure funding for their training budgets. One underutilized tool available to everyone is the After-Action Review (AAR). This process, originating in the US military, is an extremely effective method of conducting a professional review of what occurred and how to improve performance in the future. I’ve seen it work in groups as small as four individuals and as large as 160. This article focuses on the informal AAR, conducted as soon after the event as possible. This process differs from a formal AAR or report which is much more resource and time intensive.

The value of the AAR process cannot be argued. By sharing the experience of everyone involved in the incident with personnel who were not there or did not see or hear exactly what other personnel experienced, everyone gains a better understanding of what transpired. The AAR provides immediate feedback so everyone has a better understanding of what actions were taken and why. Results of the AAR should be used to resolve questions pertaining to policy application, process clarification and/or updates can be addressed. During the process, leaders can collect teaching points and trends. Training gaps and deficiencies can be discussed and identified. Future training plans can be modified to improve future performance.

CONDUCTING AN AAR

Ideally, the optimal time to conduct an AAR is immediately following the incident, when details and questions are fresh on everyone’s mind. This is especially true because you want to include just those who were directly involved. If you wish to include the entire squad (group), it is best to wait until the end of your shift. When possible, ask the oncoming supervisor to relieve your squad early, to ensure employees do not stay over their scheduled time to conduct the AAR. If leaders do not accommodate personnel schedules, poor participation is often the result because people want to leave on time. At shift change there is usually an overlap of time to help facilitate the early relief. When supervisors embrace a spirit of reciprocity between all shifts, this is usually not a problem.

Leaders should take brief notes to facilitate upcoming training adjustments or policy review. It is important to highlight that significant events may require an administrative or criminal investigation making an informal AAR inadvisable or against policy. Depending upon the incident, there may be value in delaying the AAR until after the investigation. In the event of a delayed AAR, the detailed notes of the leaders are very important. The AAR will likely take on the format of peer support, rather than training performance, based on the length of the delay.

If you are not conducting AARs on a routine basis, begin by conducting small AARs following lower-profile incidents. As your personnel and leaders become more comfortable, they will be familiar with the format and able to facilitate AARs with larger groups. This familiarization with the process prepares everyone for the larger scale, higher-profile event AARs. Everyone benefits from a well-executed AAR.

Less experienced personnel can gain experience faster by learning how to correctly respond to an incident before they are faced with a similar call. Note, leaders must demonstrate that actions, mistakes and thoughts of participants will not be used in professional evaluations. Allow the rank and file to respectfully discuss what occurred and what they were thinking as the scene unfolded. When they observe a senior officer admit to a mistake or that he could have done something better they gain respect for their senior officers for being authentic – a common area for improvement among first responders.

The AAR is an optimal time for supervisors to listen. The goal is to create a respectful environment where people can admit mistakes and improve future performance. The focus must remain on the action (improving performance), not the person. Depending on the incident, it may be beneficial to utilize a moderator who was not there. He or she may be able to ask difficult questions without offending the participants. Senior personnel benefit by gaining a keen insight to the preparedness and professionalism of the squad. Just by listening and observing how the squad interacts can provide valuable information about employees.

RULES OF ENGAGEMENT

There are specific rules of engagement when conducting an AAR. The spirit in which the AAR is conducted is paramount. When a safe environment is created employees are more likely to admit mistakes. Every employee must feel comfortable in being honest about what occurred. Open and frank discussion is encouraged but must be done respectfully by all participants. Again, the focus is on the performance/action, not the employee. Rank has no place in the professional discussion.

Accountability is universal, it must be applied at each level. It is OK to disagree with methods as long as they are legal and tactically safe. Pride is the enemy and humility rules the day. Admitting mistakes or shortcomings gains the trust of subordinates for real leaders. I recently had two discussions with different peers where I admitted fault/mistake in past scenarios. Both claimed they gained great respect for me following the admission. I’ve never had a perfect boss or employee. Those that were close to perfect admitted when they made a mistake.

The U.S. Army has a standard format (pictured), but the process can be modified. Trusting the process usually leads to positive results.

When most agencies are faced with reduced staffing and reduced budgets, it is difficult to deny the inherent value of the informal AAR. The AAR can be done anywhere at any time. First responders work in a time-compressed environment – by slowing things down an​​d allowing them to self-analyze, everyone benefits. Peers enhance their perspective and leaders better understand their personnel/unit capabilities and shortcomings. Training assessments drive the specific training needed to improve overall performance and safety.

 

About the Author

Dan Murphy has been involved in public safety for over 35 years, working in a wide variety of positions in the law enforcement field, military and civilian. He served as an operator on a law enforcement tactical team for over 18 years, serving eight years as a SWAT Team Leader. He was instrumental in the early development and fielding of Rescue Task Force Operations and Critical Emergency Tactical Training for law enforcement. Dan privately consults in the corporate environment and serves as a subject matter expert in Active Shooter Response for the US federal government. He is a retired Senior NCO from the US Army Reserves. Dan is currently a Lieutenant in the Special Operations Section, Arlington County (VA) Police Department.

About the author

The International Public Safety Association, a 501(c)3 non-profit public safety association, represents all public safety verticals: law enforcement, fire service, EMS, telecommunications, public works (water, sanitation, transportation), public health, hospitals, security, private sector, and emergency management.​
 
Editor’s Note
This article is from the International Public Safety Association’s May 2018 release of the “Acts of Mass Violence: Public Safety Response and Recovery” ebook.​

Tips on How to Improve Report Writing

By Joshua Lee | Police1.com​

Last year, I attended a weeklong regional technical training course tailored for first-line supervisors. The course covered best practices in managing large-scale chaotic scenes and conducting after-action reviews. After the training, I spoke to one of the instructors, a retired LEO, for more information on after-action reports. I was quickly met with an interesting and borderline discouraging comment: “Officer’s don’t care about reports; they care about tactics. Focus on tactics, and someone else will do the after-action report.”

“Officers don’t care about reports; they care about tactics.” Was that statement true?

I returned to work and decided to review my internal training records. I had plenty of advanced defensive tactics, active shooter and mass casualty response training but to my surprise, I had nothing related to law enforcement report writing. My external training records were just as slim – lots of courses on teaching, fraud investigations and accounting, but very few on how to write a better police report.

My colleagues were in the same boat: lots of tactics training with little to no police report writing training.

Tactics keep you alive, but a well-written police report keeps you out of trouble; however, report writing is something most agencies dismiss as an important officer survival skill.

Luckily, there are three techniques you can do to instantly improve your police report writing, avoid case dismissal and protect yourself as an officer. And the best part is that you do not need formal training and it only takes minutes a day.

1. DON’T WRITE WHEN YOU ARE TIRED

OK, I hear you: “I am always tired, so how can I write when I am not tired?”

Police exhaustion is such a major concern for police agencies that Police1 dedicated an entire podcast segment to fighting fatal fatigue in law enforcement. Unfortunately, being tired is part of the career. So, let me rephrase the heading: Write when you are less tired.

Writing while alert is necessary because the police report-writing process is mentally taxing. An officer starts by reviewing their mental and physical notes, then progresses through a series of prewriting, writing, responding, revising, editing and publishing (sending the report to a supervisor for review). When an officer is mentally exhausted or physically tired, this will lead to mistakes. Note I didn’t say, “this may lead to mistakes.” Being tired will lead to mistakes.

Most police agencies make bad report writing worse with write-it-before-you-go-home policies. After a 10+ hour shift, the last thing any officer wants to do is sit down and write a shoplifting or found property report. Of course, some investigations should be written before going home because of due process rights, immediate follow-up, or investigators are still on scene. But most police reports can be held until the officer returns the next day.

Having a small break between shifts gives an officer’s mind time to process the information and organize their thoughts subconsciously. When an officer is alert and their thoughts are organized, they will be prepared to write accurate accounts of what happened.

Time helps the mind process information.

Even if your agency requires same-day reports, there is a little trick to help mitigate mistakes. In these cases, try to write your report directly after the incident but wait two to three hours to proofread it. You will be surprised at how much extra information your brain will naturally find during that short break. If you think of any additional information after you submitted your police report, just write a supplemental report when you get in the next day.

2. USE SPELLING AND GRAMMAR CHECKERS

Over the past five years, I have read thousands of police reports from around the United States. Many of these reports are packed full of simple grammar and spelling mistakes that a word processor’s spellcheck would have caught.

I know that many of these agencies, including mine, use Microsoft Word’s spellcheck feature. So why do we continue making basic spelling and grammar mistakes? I decided to do some digging, and each time I read an exceptionally bad report, I called the agency, not to complain or call them out, but to ask questions. I found that most poorly written reports from 2010 to the present day share three traits:

  • The officer wrote the report directly in the agency’s records management system (RMS);
  • The officer did not configure spellcheck; or,
  • The officer wrote in UPPERCASE.

RMS spell checkers are improving, especially in the new AI integrated RMS 3.0 versions. But as of right now, even the most basic version of Microsoft’s Word spellcheck outperforms any RMS spellchecker. Try to write your report in a word processor first, then copy and paste it into your agency’s RMS.

(If you want to learn more about how to set up spellcheck correctly, read the next article in this series, How to set up spellcheck to proofread your police report, available for Police1 members only.)

Writing in uppercase is an unnecessary annoyance. If you are writing in uppercase, please stop. Your boss, your prosecutor and all the agencies reading your report will thank you. Writing in uppercase is an old technique used to correct bad penmanship, but since we are writing in a word processor, all uppercase writing is not needed. Spellcheck also must be configured correctly for it to catch mistakes in uppercase.

3. READ YOUR REPORT ALOUD

The best advice I ever received in school is to read reports aloud. Even if your spoken grammar is not perfect, reading your report aloud will help you catch many small grammar and sentence mistakes not caught by spellcheck. If a sentence sounds weird, change it. Nine times out of 10, you will be correct.

Just remember, you don’t need to read LOUD, just aloud. Be courteous of those around you by just whispering.

GOOD REPORT-WRITING SKILLS PROTECT OFFICERS

You don’t have to become a novelist or a professional writer to be a good writer. But you should put a little effort into becoming a better writer than where you are now. These three techniques are simple and easy to apply and more importantly, they work. Good police report-writing skills will not only protect you on the street from overzealous anti-police lawyers but also in the courtroom, internal affairs investigations and school.

BONUS CONTENT: HOW TO TRAIN YOUR EAR TO CATCH WRITING MISTAKES

If you spend time training your ear for writing, you will catch even more mistakes. An excellent way to train your ear for good sentence structure and grammar is to read good literature aloud. I recommend “The Stories of Vladimir Nabokov” not because it is an enjoyable read but because his sentences are as close to perfect as they come, and he really focuses on the sound of a sentence. Read one page a day aloud. Ignore the content, just listen to the words and sounds. Your mind will automatically notice sentence parallelism, assonance, rhythm and alliteration – all critical features of a good sentence. When you read your police report aloud, your ear will suddenly pick up the smaller mistakes in your writing.

About the Author

Joshua Lee is an active-duty police sergeant for the City of Mesa (Arizona) Police Department. Before promoting, Joshua served five years as a patrol officer and six years as a detective with the Organized Crime Section investigating civil asset forfeiture, white-collar financial crime and cryptocurrency crimes.

Joshua is a cryptocurrency, money laundering and dark web consultant for banks, financial institutions and accountants throughout Arizona. He also serves as one of Arizona’s subject matter experts on cryptocurrency crimes and money laundering.

Joshua holds a BA in Justice Studies, an MS in Legal Studies and an MA in Professional Writing. He has earned some of law enforcement’s top certifications, including the ACFE’s Certified Fraud Examiners (CFE) and the IAFC’s Certified Cyber Crimes Investigator (CCCI).

Joshua is also an adjunct professor at a large national university and smaller regional college teaching, law, criminal justice, government and English courses. He instructs police in-service training and teaches at the regional police academy.

Jefferson County Jailers Save Four Inmates in Two Days, Sheriff Says

​Female cells at the Jefferson County Jail in 2005 file photo by Wayne Crosslin St. Louis Post Dispatch.

Correctional officers in the Jefferson County jail recently stopped one suicide attempt and three opiate overdoses, the sheriff said Tuesday.

Sheriff Dave Marshak credited the work of jailers, both in a tweet and in an interview with the Post-Dispatch, saying he was prompted to recognize the employees publicly in part by the “general conversation about jail safety and jail security” that has been occurring since an inmate uprising at the St. Louis City Justice Center on Sunday night.

“I think sometimes these correctional officers do the most difficult job and they’re often underrecognized and underappreciated,” he said.

Marshak said the three overdoses Sunday night were stopped with the aid of naloxone, a drug that reverses the effects of opiates. The inmates were then taken to a hospital for evaluation and have since been returned to jail, he said. “Everyone’s recovered. Everyone’s fine.”

An investigation showed that another inmate smuggled a drug into jail in a body cavity, and offered to sell it to others, Marshak said. Drugs are sometimes sold in exchange for food or other items that inmates can purchase from the commissary.

It’s believed the drug was fentanyl. The smuggler may now face new charges, he said.

Although a body scanner is used to try and prevent the smuggling of contraband into jail, Marshak said the drugs may have been hard to detect. “It was difficult to see how it was packaged in the rectum area,” he said.

If the drugs were missed by jailers, that would spark an internal investigation, he said.

The scanner has been used at the jail for two years. “We had an overdose in the past so we thought it was important to purchase it,” he said.

Although expensive, Marshak said, “if you have an incident like that in your facility, you have to look at it from a risk-management standpoint.”

Meanwhile, the suicide attempt Monday involved a woman who tried to hang herself using her pants leg, sheriff’s spokesman Grant Bissell said. Another inmate alerted officers who found her in her cell blue in the face and unresponsive, he said. They called a nurse and an ambulance and she was taken to the hospital where she was being held for a psychiatric evaluation, he said.

“It happens once or twice a year where a correctional officer will see it or be made aware of it and intervene,” Marshak said.

“We have a responsibility to maintain their health,” the sheriff said of inmates.

Story By Robert Patrick | St. Louis Today | https://www.stltoday.com/

New App Detects Fake Missouri IDs

The Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control announced this week it has partnered with the MoDOT Highway Safety and Traffic Division, to launch a free app to aid retail employees and other users in verifying the authenticity of IDs simply by scanning the ID with the camera on a mobile phone or tablet. The “Show-Me ID” app became available to all Missourians on Thursday, April 1.

“Underage drinking is a danger to Missouri’s young people and others on the road, and the new Show-Me ID app makes it easier than ever for all those who sell alcohol to verify the authenticity of any state-issued identification to aid in the prevention of alcohol being sold to minors,” said Dottie Taylor, state supervisor of the Division of Alcohol and Tobacco Control. “While this is in no way a replacement for the physical checking of an ID and comparison to the person providing it, it is certainly another powerful tool to aid retail employees. While there are other apps available and none that are fool-proof, this is the best that we have used.”

The app can be found in the Apple App Store and Google Play. Users search for it by typing “Show-Me ID” in their search once they have opened their app store.

Taylor said Show-Me ID automatically signals the user when a scanned ID is fraudulent. The app includes a calendar feature to alert whether the bearer of a legitimate ID is of legal age to purchase alcohol or tobacco products. There is also a guide on the app that reminds the user of the proper steps for checking whether the ID is valid and the prospective purchaser is of legal age. The Show-Me ID app does not store the information from IDs it has scanned.

“Underage drinking is dangerous in and of itself, but coupled with driving it can be dea​​dly,” said Jon Nelson, MoDOT assistant to the state highway safety and traffic engineer. “By preventing underage purchases of alcohol, we can potentially save lives not only of our youth but also other users of Missouri’s roadways.”

Alcohol is the most commonly used substance among young people in the U.S., according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The agency says excessive drinking is responsible for more than 3,500 deaths among people under age 21 and more than 100,000 emergency room visits by persons aged 12 to 21 for injuries and other conditions linked to alcohol.

Story by Lake Expo | lakeexpo.com

Legislators Reintroduce Bill to Change Job Classification of 911 Dispatchers Nationwide

Livingston County, Missouri Sheriff’s Office E-911 and Communications.

Legislators have reintroduced a bill in Congress that would change the job classification of 911 dispatchers nationwide.

The 911 SAVES Act would classify 911 dispatchers under “protective service occupations” instead of “office and administrative support occupations,” adding them to the same category as firefighters, law enforcement officers, corrections officers and other public safety staff. (EMS providers are classified under healthcare occupations.)

The bill was co-authored by Rep. Norma J. Torres (D-Calif.) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.) and is currently cosponsored by a bipartisan group of 49 other lawmakers.

“As someone who answered 911 calls for LAPD for nearly 18 years, I know firsthand that dispatchers are unsung heroes in our emergency response system,” Torres said in a statement. “Lives are at stake with each all they take – it’s beyond time that we recognize the high stakes of the job, and the incredible sacrifices these professionals make to keep the rest of us safe.”

Torres also added that the current classification under office and administrative support staff doesn’t reflect the high PTSD rates among 911 dispatchers, which she said go up to nearly 25%.

“As a former FBI agent, I know first-hand the lifesaving services provided by our 9-1-1 operators and dispatchers are vital for the safety of our community,” Fitzpatrick said in a statement. “When in danger, we call 9-1-1 and depend on the hard-working, dedicated public servants on the other end of the line to ensure we get the help we need. They are the first responders among first responders.”

The bill is backed by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO), the National Emergency Number Association (NENA) and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME).

“America’s 9-1-1 professionals may be the most important people you will never meet. They are the vital first link in the emergency-response chain,” said NENA CEO Brian Fontes, in a statement. “Passing the 911 SAVES Act would give the estimated 100,000 public safety telecommunications located in every community across American the respect and support they deserve while improving the government’s data collection and analysis efforts. Combined with the possible enactment of a workable Next Generation 9-1-1 bill, 2021 could mark the dawn of a new era for America’s 9-1-1 systems and the hard-working professionals wh​​o lead and staff them.”

The 911 SAVES Act was previously introduced in the 116th Congress in 2019.

Some state and local governments h​​ave passed legislation classifying 911 dispatchers among first responders; most recently, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly signed a bill classifying dispatchers as emergency responders statewide.

Story written by Laura French | Police1.com

Policing on the Front Lines of the Opioid Crisis

Law enforcement officers play three important roles on the front lines of the opioid epidemic: They are responsible for emergency response and preserving public safety as well as law enforcement. This report from the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) discusses the challenge of reconciling the conflicts that can arise among these roles and presents recommendations for alleviating these difficulties and improving law enforcement response to the opioid crisis.

The COPS Office is the component of the U.S. Department of Justice responsible for advancing the practice of community policing by the nation’s state, local, territorial, and tribal law enforcement agencies through information and grant resources.

The COPS Office publishes materials for law enforcement and community stakeholders to use in collaborativ​​ely addressing crime and disorder challenges. 

These free publications provide best practice approaches and give access to collective knowledge from the field. You can find their recent and featured publications, and search the Resource Center or their Community Policing Topics pages for specific issues ​by visiting ​​https://cops.usdoj.gov/recentreleases or by calling the COPS Office Response Center at 800-421-6770.

Photo by camilo jimenez | Unsplash.com

National DEA Drug Take Back Day is Approaching

​​According to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants, and 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019. The survey also showed that a majority of misused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.

​​The US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) National Take Back Day, set to take place this year from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 24, ​​addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue by giving Americans the opportunity to clean out their medicine cabinets and turn in — safely and anonymously — unused prescription drugs.

In 2020 alone, Americans returned 985,392 lbs (492.7 tons) of unused prescription drugs at 4,487 Collection Sites across the country.​ ​The DEA, along with its law enforcement partners, has now collected nearly 13.7 million pounds of expired, unused, and unwanted prescription medications since the inception of the National Prescription Drug Take Back Initiative in 2010.
 
​Find a drop-off site near you by visiting https://takebackday.dea.gov/#collection-locator.
 
Law enforcement agencies interested in hosting a collection site should visit https://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/poc.htm
 
To learn more about legal and illegal drugs and the effect they can have on your mind and body visit https://www.getsmartaboutdrugs.gov/drugs
 
If no prescription drug take-back program is available in your area, you can find simple steps to throw the drugs in the household trash by visiting https://www.dea.gov/sites/default/files/2018-10/Proper%20Disposal%20Flier%20%28October%202018%29.pdf
 
To learn more about drug scheduling and penalties visit https://www.campusdrugprevention.gov/content/drug-scheduling-and-penalties
 
To locate a treatment facility that addresses substance use/addiction and mental health issues visit https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/