Caraway police closing gap between officers and children - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Caraway police closing gap between officers and children

(Source: KAIT) (Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT) (Source: KAIT)
CARAWAY, AR (KAIT) -

Caraway police are closing the gap between officers and fearful children in the community.

“In 2016, Riverside School District Superintendent Jeff Priest wanted to bring law enforcement into the school,” Caraway Police Chief, Shannon Kelems said. “He wanted the parents, kids, and faculty to feel safer with the police here. So, we’ve provided security for them at the schools.”

Every day at Riverside East campus either Caraway Police Chief Kelems or Patrol Sergeant Aaron Bupp report to the school for duty.

Over the past year, it’s become more than security work.

The two officers have noticed a gap between them and the children has closed.

“The kids have warmed up to us, they give us high fives, we play games they want to play, it’s been a positive effect,” Kelems said.

Now, when out on regular patrols, the kids interact with the officers the same way they do at school.

That was not the case before they implemented the new program.

“You know, the children are able to see now that we are not the bad guys,” Bupp said. “A lot of people downgrade the police. If it so happens that we have to arrest a child’s parent, well used to be it was the parent that would say, 'Oh, that police officer, he’s no good.' The children are able to interact with us now. They are able to make their own opinions, like 'Hey, the police aren’t just here to be the bad guys and take mom and dad away. They are here to make a difference.'”

Kelems said it’s brought them closer to not only the students but parents, too.

They hope their love and support for the community can spread to other towns struggling for a bond between the police and people.

“We love our jobs,” Kelems said. “We want to come to work every day and make a difference. I hope we are doing that.”

Copyright 2017 KAIT. All rights reserved.

Watch Region 8 News On Demand: On your Desktop | On your Mobile device

Region 8 News App - Install or update on your: iPhone | Android

  • Region 8 News</span><a class="customMoreLink" href="/Global/category.asp?C=4391" target="_top">More >></a>Region 8 NewsMore>>

  • breaking

    Power outages reported in Craighead County with storm

    Power outages reported in Craighead County with storm

    Sunday, July 15 2018 6:27 PM EDT2018-07-15 22:27:46 GMT
    Sunday, July 15 2018 6:33 PM EDT2018-07-15 22:33:39 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)

    According to a post on the Craighead Electric outage map website, there are about 525 customers in Craighead County who are now without power. 

    According to a post on the Craighead Electric outage map website, there are about 525 customers in Craighead County who are now without power. 

  • breaking

    Sheriff: One in custody in connection with deaths

    Sheriff: One in custody in connection with deaths

    Sunday, July 15 2018 3:40 PM EDT2018-07-15 19:40:45 GMT
    Sunday, July 15 2018 4:34 PM EDT2018-07-15 20:34:31 GMT

    According to Randolph County Sheriff Gary Tribble, a person was being held Sunday in the Randolph County jail after being taken into custody by Arkansas State Police in connection with the deaths of two people. 

    According to Randolph County Sheriff Gary Tribble, a person was being held Sunday in the Randolph County jail after being taken into custody by Arkansas State Police in connection with the deaths of two people. 

  • Two men arrested for dumping dogs outside in Kennett

    Two men arrested for dumping dogs outside in Kennett

    Sunday, July 15 2018 11:34 AM EDT2018-07-15 15:34:24 GMT
    The two suspects (pictured) are wanted for questioning after leaving two dogs outside at the Kennett Humane Department. (Source: Kennett Humane Dept.)The two suspects (pictured) are wanted for questioning after leaving two dogs outside at the Kennett Humane Department. (Source: Kennett Humane Dept.)

    Two suspects are wanted for questioning after leaving two dogs outside at the Kennett Humane Department.

    Two suspects are wanted for questioning after leaving two dogs outside at the Kennett Humane Department.

Powered by Frankly