Chief Redden's Thoughts/The Campaign

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Chief Redden's Thoughts

Rex Redden

I had the opportunity to visit with one of our local pastors recently. We were discussing current events and he said something that really struck a chord with me, he said, “It’s amazing how quick people are to jump up and demand their rights, but you never see anyone holding a sign saying what their responsibilities are.”

I found this statement very profound, and it led me back to thinking about an early principle of policing I learned as a young officer.

In 1829, A British statesman by the name of Sir Robert Peel was appointed to organize the first Metropolitan Police Force in London. Peel is considered by many to be the Father of Modern Policing and to this day, British officers are called “Bobbies” in his honor.

Among Peel’s legacy is a set of principles he developed to guide his new police force. There are nine Peelian principles, but one in particular seems to have the most striking impression especially in today’s times.

Principle number seven states the police “at all times maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police, the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.”

I think this is a very powerful reminder that your police department is comprised of members of your community, good people just like you, who are paid to give full time attention to what we should all be doing.

The police department and its officers are not expecting citizens to run around catching criminals, that’s our paying job. But the simple act of policing one’s self, keeping your own actions in check, can lead to a better, safer community. Drive the speed limit. Report suspicious activity in your neighborhood. Get to know your neighbors. These are all simple things that can reduce crime and make our community safer.

It takes three things for a crime to occur: a victim, a criminal and an opportunity. If any one of these components is removed from the equation, then the crime will not happen. The paid police focus on removing the criminal from the equation, that is our primary job and it can be dangerous. But the public can do its part by helping to remove the opportunity for a crime to occur. The vast majority of crime occurs on private property, either at a home or someone’s business. The police are designed to patrol the public areas of the community, and I don’t think most people would be comfortable with a police officer walking onto their property every evening to check and make sure everything is locked up.

So it’s up to the public to police personal property. Make sure cars are locked, property is removed or hidden, make sure garages are closed and property is secure.

It’s easy to think of the police as some strange outside entity here to maintain order, when in fact, we are all the police. It does take a community working together to keep everyone safe. Everyone has a part to play, the police and the public. We really are In It Together. 

The Campaign

The Carrollton Police Department has introduced a new opportunity for citizens to actively show encouragement for local law enforcement officers.

The “In It Together” campaign is based on the fact that both law enforcement and the public are responsible for keeping the peace in our community.

In It Together posterPublic safety officers enforce the laws, but it’s up to residents to actively abide by them. Fortunately, Carrollton has one of the lowest crime rates in the area; even with steady increases in population growth, the City has seen a steady decrease in crimes since 2000 according to annual Department of Public Safety reports.

“The In It Together campaign will bring together members of Carrollton’s public safety team, and those we protect, the citizens,” Police Chief Rex Redden said. “We want to emphasize the responsibility both sides of the law have to one another through this campaign. From events and positive interactions with officers, to stickers and posters affirming police support, we hope Carrollton residents will continue to engage with us as a positive presence in the community.”

In 1829, A British statesman by the name of Sir Robert Peel was appointed to organize the first Metropolitan Police Force in London. Peel is considered by many to be the Father of Modern Policing and to this day, British officers are called “Bobbies” in his honor.

Among Peel’s legacy is a set of principles he developed to guide his new police force. There are nine Peelian principles, but one in particular leaves a striking impression especially in today’s times.

Principle number seven states the police should “at all times maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police, the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.”

Redden emphasized that the police department and its officers are not expecting citizens to run around catching criminals.

“That’s our paying job,” he said. “But the simple act of policing one’s self, keeping your own actions in check, can lead to a better, safer community. Drive the speed limit. Report suspicious activity in your neighborhood. Get to know your neighbors. These are all simple things that can moderate crime and make our community safer.”

Redden went on to say practicing crime prevention tactics like locking cars, taking valuables, keeping garage doors closed, and locking doors and fences will aid tremendously in the reduction of community-wide delinquency.

The program seeks to include all community members and break down any barriers in communication, interaction, or understanding between the public and the police.

Residents have the opportunity to meet up with members of their public safety team at various City events, including Coffee with a Cop held once a month around town. Additionally, those interested in displaying support for Carrollton PD can pick up free “In It Together” window stickers at the police department lobby (2025 E. Jackson Road) and other City facilities. The stickers are best applied to a clean window using a straight edge tool to reduce bubbling. For bulk orders of the stickers, contact pio@cityofcarrollton.com.

Be sure to follow @CarrolltonTXPD on Twitter and Facebook and look for the campaign hashtag #InItTogetherCPD.