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Police Chief: Officer to receive life-saving award for actions during incident

During an April 23 chat session, Tahlequah Police Chief Nate King updated the public on call numbers for April and praised one officer for his actions during an unfortunate incident.

Officers have logged 2,820 calls for service; close to 961 building checks; about 700 citizen contacts that includes traffic stops and pedestrian stops; 18 thefts; seven burglaries; 39 arrests; and 50 vehicle crashes.

"When citizens call us, out of those 2,820 calls, 1,054 of them have been somebody calling dispatch or 911 and us sending an officer. Which means almost 1,700 of our calls this month are officer-initiated calls; traffic stops; building checks; pedestrian stops; things of that nature," King said.

King said Tahlequah is below the national and state average for property crime or violent crime.

"I think is a very good thing for any town to be able to say that. For the month, we've had 18 thefts, we've had seven burglary calls that we've gone on for the month, which is less than one property crime a day for Tahlequah," he said. "You've got a group of officers here, men and women, dispatchers and officers that work hard day in and day out. Something we've tried to do at the police department is to, an honest day's work for an honest day's pay. Which means we're continually active. It's not just, 'Sit around until the radio goes off,'" he said.

The police chief added that he believes would-be criminals are deterred by the police presence in Tahlequah, along with community members who have security systems on and in their homes.

Additionally, King asked drivers to be mindful with all the road construction going on since officers have responded to about two vehicle crashes a day.

"It's been a busy months and we're on pace right now to log more than 40,000 calls for service for the year, for the calendar year if we continue this pace," he said. "It means a lot of work for officers. We're five officers down right now. We have two that are out on injury, we have two brand new ones that are being trained but not yet on their own fully taking their load of calls per say, and then we've got one that's hired but won't start until about June."

King praised Officer David Trammell, who will be receiving a life-saving commendation award during a May 6 Tahlequah City Council meeting. Trammell was dispatched to a man who was reportedly threatening self-harm with a broken bottle.

"Officer Trammell ended up Tasing him to prevent him from injuring himself. I know it sounds odd that in deploying the Taser, you're going to get a life-saving award, but the way he approached the call, it was really 'top-notch' police work and keeping his head and keeping calm in the situation. It was stressful [and] so 'attaboy' to Officer David Trammell," King said.

In other business, King touched on the much-anticipated Red Fern Festival that's happening this weekend, and the unfortunate inclement weather that's predicted during the event.

"I am confident that Mike Underwood and Scott Pettus with Emergency Management will keep us informed through the National Weather Service and hopefully we'll get some Red Fern in. It's such a great festival," he said.


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