Speedway Police-Community Partnership: 2015 Year in Review

ICYMI: As another year comes to a close, we’d like to present a recap of some of the community policing initiatives from the Speedway Police Department.

January

To show their continued support and thanks to the Speedway Police Dept. in conjunction with Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, the Speedway Police Citizens Academy Alumni Association presented SPD personnel with restaurant gift cards, which were donated by alumni.

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Speedway Police Citizens Academy Gives Gift Cards to SPD

Speedway Police Citizens Academy Gives Gift Cards to SPD

February

Speedway Neighborhood Watch held a meeting where Speedway Police Chief Jim Campbell and Assistant Chief Chuck Upchurch gave a presentation on crime statistics that were recently published on an online real estate brokerage site/blog.

March

The observation and quick reporting by a Speedway resident (and SPD Citizens Academy Alumni) to the Speedway Police Department last night led to the arrest of the suspect regarding a drug deal near Pam’s Pitstop Pizza. This is an excellent example of how Speedway residents can partner with the Speedway Police Department, report suspicious activity, and can effect real change in our town and help us stay safe.

The Speedway Police Department was awarded accreditation at the CALEA conference in Reno, Nevada. Sgt. James Thiele and Administrative Coordinator Sarah Edie were responsible for coordinating the effort. CALEA accreditation signifies the department is using best practices and operating with the gold standard of professional police excellence.

April

Speedway Police Department announces its newest community policing program, Student Academy, modeled after its successful adult-level Citizens Academy.  The Student Academy, coordinated by Speedway Resource Officer Mark Jones, is a contemporary concept used to build positive relationships between local law enforcement and students in the Speedway community. This voluntary program will facilitate open and active dialogue between students and officers in a classroom atmosphere, utilizing topics related to law enforcement as the foundation for discussion. 

In addition, SPD launched another community policing program, Volunteers in Policing (V.I.P.), with 14 alumni from the Speedway Police Citizens Academy Alumni joining at Tier 1. The V.I.P. program will be based upon a tiered system. Each tier will be representative of a specific set of duties and responsibilities that will be commensurate with training each volunteer receives from the Speedway Police Department. Each tier is progressively more intensive, and requires additional training the further the volunteer progresses in the program. Several of the Tier 1 VIPs expressed interest in continuing to Tier 2, with training to take place later this summer.

Detective Kyle Hodges and Lauren Roemke participated in “Read Across America” today at Allison Elementary. The two were part of a group of Speedway PD employees that read books at local schools. The two dressed as Thing 1 and Thing 2 from Dr. Seuss.

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May

Shannon Turpin, wife of SPD Officer Mat Turpin (K9 Unit) and some of the wives of other SPD Officers, along with Citizens Academy Alumni and Speedway residents, showed their support for SPD during National Police Week by providing a bar containing various types of fruits, candy, snacks, granola bars, bottled water, juice, etc.; thank you cards; desserts; donuts/bagels and juice; gift card giveaway.

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June

RTV6’s video features the Speedway Police Dept.’s Student Academy, which joins the Speedway Police Citizens Academy and Speedway Neighborhood Watch, two other community policing programs started by SPD to build positive community-police relationships. CBS 4 also featured the Student Academy.

The Speedway Police Citizens Academy class scheduled for September, received a phenomenal response! All 20 seats were filled by June, and applications continued to be received, resulting in a waiting list for the 2016 class! Graduates of the Police Citizens Academy class also have opportunities to support and volunteer with the police department in a variety of ways.

For more information on the Speedway Police Citizens Academy class, click here.

On Saturday, June 6, the Speedway Police Dept, Citizens Academy Alumni and Neighborhood Watch volunteers were at Leonard Park for Relay for Life running a Jail & Bail…Officer Pat Hammel is on hand to arrest!

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July

Speedway Police escorts Jeff Gordon from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to Pittsboro for a parade in his honor.

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Nine Tier 1 Volunteers in Policing (V.I.P.s) begin 35-40 hours of training to move forward into Tier 2, which training will commence in August.

August

The first class of nine Tier 2 Volunteers in Policing graduated on Thursday, August 6, 2015, with a ceremony at Speedway Town Hall. Police Chief Jim Campbell spoke about the importance of the department’s community policing programs, including Neighborhood Watch, the Citizens Academy, and the newest program, Volunteers in Policing (V.I.P.). These programs strengthen the community through building positive relationships between residents and police, working together to solve community concerns and problems. Chief Campbell expressed his and the department’s appreciation to the volunteers (and their families) for their time and dedication to the department and the Town of Speedway.
Speedway V.I.P. Tier 2 Graduation

September

The 6th Speedway Police Citizens Academy class began on September 2nd and we couldn’t be more pleased with the tremendous response from residents! The class was filled a couple of months ago, and there is a waiting list whose applications will be considered for the 2016 class. We hope that the momentum of interest in the class will continue to build over the years, and that graduates will join our Citizens Academy Alumni and become active in supporting and assisting the department. Over the 12-week class, student Pauletta Dusterberg wrote about her experience with the SPCA, which we published here and was featured in the Speedway Town Press. For more info on SPCA or to apply, click here.

Congratulations to Officer Mark Jones who is celebrating his 30th year with the Speedway Police Department in 2015.

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October

The Speedway Police Department, Citizens Academy Alumni, and Neighborhood Watch held National Night Out on the alternate date of October 6th. We had great weather and an even better turnout of residents who enjoyed food, bounce houses, face painter, music, prizes – and most of all, building community-police relationships!

2015 Speedway NNO

Here is a slideshow of photos from the event. If you are on an iOS device and cannot view the slideshow below, click here.

State Representative Karlee Macer and Officer Keegan Rupenthal stopped by to meet volunteers working on the home at 20th and Allison today. The home is being built for an Army veteran. It is being built by the Pit Crew and is sponsored by Jonathan Byrds and partners with the Fuller Center for Housing and the Speedway Community Development Corporation.

Macer was doing her ride along as part of the 2015 Speedway Police Department Citizens Academy.

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Speedway officers recently completed an IPMBA certified police mountain biking school hosted by Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department. During the school they got to meet Butler Blue III on the floor of Hinkle Fieldhouse. Pictured below are Officers Alex Redding, Robert Fekkes, Joe Harmon and Jacob McAtee. Officer Fekkes is a certified instructor and assisted with class instruction. The other three officers became certified during the school and will be utilized for cycling patrols throughout the year.

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The Speedway Police Department and Citizens Academy Alumni / Volunteers in Policing participated in the Speedway Chamber of Commerce event, Trunk or Treat, handing out candy to Speedway children! It’s a great event that keeps increasing in popularity and we are happy to participate!
2015 Trunk or Treat

Volunteers in Policing (V.I.P.s) assist the Speedway Police Department with the semi-annual Shred-it Day event, which helps raise money for CrimeStopppers of Central Indiana.
Shred-it Day, October 2015: Volunteers in Policing (VIP)
Shred-it Day, October 2015: Volunteers in Policing (VIP)

Congratulations to  Officers Keegan Rupenthal and Jacob McAtee who have been selected to join the Motorcycle Unit!

November

Tatin Carroll, 6, had his wish to be a super hero granted by the Make a Wish foundation and Riley Hospital for Children at IU Health Friday, November 20, 2015. His wish was to be a Super Hero and he was turned into Turbo Tatin. He visited the Indianapolis Colts, The Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Riley Hospital for Children where he captured a toy thief.

Speedway Police Lt. Sam Alexander and Officer Jereme Howery escorting Turbo Tatin to Riley Hospital to save the city!

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Officer Howery assists Turbo Tatin in bringing the Terrible Toymentor to justice!

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Speedway Police (Chief Jim Campbell, Asst. Chief Upchurch, Capt. Jason Dierdorff, Sgt. Mirantha Wilson, Officer Mat Turpin, Officer James Bell, Officer Mark Jones, Officer Joe Harmon, Det. Lauren Roemke, and Officer Jacob McAtee) at a meet & greet with the students of the Pride Academy.12049148_1168276846520081_4584745102303481782_n

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Congratulations to the 6th Speedway Police Citizens Academy class! Over the past 11 weeks, they had a chance to learn more about how police really do their jobs, the tools and procedures they use, the decisions they make and the people they deal with daily. Graduates now have the opportunity, if they choose, to volunteer with SPD in a variety of ways. We’re glad to have them join us!

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Congratulations to Sgt. Robert Dine on successfully completing the IMPD Leadership Academy and graduating on November 20th!

December

Volunteers with the Speedway Citizens Academy Alumni and Volunteers in Policing assisted with Light the Night on Main. V.I.P.s provided assistance with traffic direction/control, while CA alumni provided information to attendees on SPD’s community policing programs.

Since graduating in August, Volunteers in Policing VIPs have assisted the Speedway Police Department with valuable staffing at many town events, including the Indiana State Criterium, Hops & Flip Flops 5K, Indy Jazz fest, Lions Club Halloween event, Shred-it Day, Speedway Spectacular Parade, and Speedway Zombie Fun Run. The Town of Speedway will continue to benefit from these dedicated volunteers!
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Speedway Police escort Santa Claus, driven by IndyCar’s Ed Carpenter, to the Indianapolis Children’s Museum.

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Officer Howery and Lamariante Poole at shop with a cop Sponsored by FOP Lodge 86.

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VIP and Citizens Academy-BW As the nation’s law enforcement continues to face challenges, the Speedway Police Department continues to maintain the positive growth and forward momentum of its community policing programs. 2015 saw unprecedented interest in the Speedway Police Citizens Academy program, and the successful launch of two new programs, the Student Academy and Volunteers in Policing (V.I.P.).

With so many residents partnering with the Speedway Police Department, we’re anticipating an even better 2016!

One comment

  1. Jereme Howery says:

    It’s a privilege and an honor to work with a bunch of great officers and administration who let us as police officers get to know the town and forge life long relationships. My wife and I are proud to live in such a special town known as Speedway.

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