New DARE vehicle on road

(Source: KAIT-TV)
(Source: KAIT-TV)

CRAIGHEAD COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - Deputy Sheriff Jamey Carter with the Craighead County Sheriff's Department is a DARE officer.

"Our last vehicle we had for about eight years," Carter said. "It was just time to get something new. The other had quite a few miles on it. After we talked about a new one, the motor went out on the other one!"

The vehicle they have now is a Dodge Ram pickup.

"The DARE vehicle is very important," Carter said. "It's eye-catching. So when I'm driving around town or just patrolling and going from place to place it reminds people of the DARE program and the kids see it and they love the truck."

DARE stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education.

The Craighead County Sheriff's Department has helped bring the program to the Craighead County School Districts for over 20 years.

"We go into the schools," Carter said. "We talk to the kids about drug use. And DARE has kind of changed over the last few years. Now, we teach them more about making good decisions. We teach them how to make decisions in small areas and then at the end of the class we throw a drug situation at them. And usually they start saying things like, 'Why are there drugs?' We tell them to hang on and slow down and that if they made a good decision with something small can we not apply those same principles to make a decision in something big? And you just see the light bulbs going off in their heads."

But drugs aren't the only topic of discussion.

"We talk about bullying," Carter said. "How to report bullying. How to stop bullying. We talk about stress and how to get rid of it. Good decision making, consequences, peer pressure. We cover a whole lot of things. But it's all wrapped around learning how to make good decisions and applying it to your life. Staying away from drugs and violence."

Five schools in Craighead County currently participate in the DARE program.

Carter said he taught around 1,200 students in Craighead County this year.

For more information about the DARE program, click here.

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