CASPER, Wyo. — The Evansville Police Department is expected to revive its daily visits to Evansville Elementary within the next few weeks.
Evansville Police Chief Mike Thompson told Oil City News the agreement with the Natrona County School District is aimed at promoting general safety, visibility, and early positive relationships with kids.
“There’s certain things that we have in our lives that make impacts,” Thompson said. “Having that impact with these kids now, in a positive light, may be enough to keep them out of trouble when they get older.”
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Thompson said the “smiles, the hugs and the knuckle bumps from the kids” also give officers a “refreshing, positive atmosphere” and a needed respite from the negative public interactions typical of police work.
Before COVID-19 struck in March of 2020, Evansville officers would visit the school for about an hour a day, walking the halls and sometimes playing football. Under the previous Memorandum of Understanding, NCSD reimbursed the department $43 for an hour for spending about an hour per day at the school.
The agreement also allowed Evansville PD the use of the school for 14 hours per year for training.
Thompson told the Evansville Town Council at its regular meeting Monday night, September 13 that NCSD had reached out to his department looking to revive the agreement, and that the school’s principal was also on board.
Council member Joseph Knop noted that he had grandchildren at the school, saying, “They actually asked me where the police officers were at.”
Thompson said the agreement will now be forwarded to the NCSD superintendent for approval.