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Police Chief: officers to work more traffic where higher volume of crashes reported

During a Feb. 5 chat session, Tahlequah Police Chief Nate King updated the public on call numbers for January and discussed what's new at the department.

The department logged about 4,000 calls in January; six burglaries; 18 thefts; 35 shoplifting incidents; and 48 vehicle crashes.

“We’ve conducted about 1,330 citizen contacts; traffic stops and pedestrian stops," King said. "[We had] 1,400 building checks, made 59 arrests, and took 270 reports."

King gave a shoutout to Officer Dylan Harman, who led the department with 260 non-building check calls. Officer David Trammell led the department with the number of building checks, Lt. Bryan Qualls took 22 reports, and Officer Brad Baker conducted 165 traffic stops for the month.

“On Friday, we received our new handguns that were ordered in the fall last year. We are upgrading our handguns in the police department. Thanks to the mayor and council for providing those funds in the budget," he said.

Additionally, the TPD is ordering a radar trailer using donated funds from Cherokee Nation.

"A trailer we can put where we receive a complaint of [speeding] in a neighborhood. We can position that trailer that not only radars speed but it also collects data so that we can be more data-driven on where we're putting officers, and it's also a dual purpose trailer," King said.

The trailer can also display messages for downtown events and road closures in the foreseeable future.

The Chief will attend a monthly supervisor's meeting Tuesday, Feb. 6 wherein they'll discuss what's been going on in each shift and the expectations of those shifts.

"We've been testing and probably going to purchase a law enforcement messaging platform; 'Connect Protect,'" King said. "It basically allows us to form different chat groups, a board that we can post things on that officers can get on their phones."

Folks can expect to see heavier law enforcement presence in areas where there's been an uptick in vehicle crashes. King said the Special Emphasis Unit worked traffic and made about 60 stops in four hours last week.

"We're going to be doing that and we're going to be doing that in places where we're seeing the most accidents; around the [Bertha Parker] Bypass because that's where our worst accidents are because they're the highest speed accidents," he said.


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