The ever-growing drug problem and subsequent crimes in connection are very real in our community. As the Shell Lake Police Chief, I have been approached by many community members asking me: “How can we help?”
- Get involved, be situationally aware and informed. Educate yourself about the problem.
- The most important thing to remember is that we are here to keep our community safe. We understand that in a small community such as ours, often the individuals involved in suspected criminal activity are family members, friends, neighbors, or other relatives. This can make it difficult for you as the caller to turn in the suspected offender. Something that we often hear is “I don't want to get them into trouble.” It is important to remember that often times when an individual gets into trouble, it starts a process whereby they can get the help they need. Intervention by law enforcement can be the trigger point in the system to get the individual before the court, and get court ordered sanctions, treatment, and follow up services. There are many programs in place for these individuals, however, most of these programs are not available to them until they receive charges for their suspected criminal activity.
Another statement that we often hear is “I am afraid of retaliation if I turn someone in.” There are protections in place for those who provide information about suspected criminal activity.
- If you see something that seems suspicious or you have knowledge of something that you think may be criminal activity, contact law enforcement right away.
- When you do contact law enforcement, try to provide as many details as you can. The more information you can provide, the more effectively our officers can follow up on the tip.
I believe the 3-Prong Approach is the best tool we have in addressing the issue of criminal activity in our community:
- PREVENTION: Talk to your kids about the dangers of drugs and criminal activity. It is an unfortunate fact that it is not uncommon for children as young as 11 years old to be involved with drugs and other behaviors
- ENFORCEMENT/ACCOUNTABILITY: This is where intervention by law enforcement and the court system comes into play
- TREATMENT: Alcohol and Drug Assessments and Treatment Plans and Counseling (all of which can sometimes be court-ordered) to help individuals with their addictions and behaviors, and other follow-up services that they may require
We cannot do this job alone. We need the assistance and cooperation from you.
How to contact the Shell Lake Police Department:
- Phone:715-468-7640 or 715-520-2659 (If not answered, please leave a message and we will return your call)
- Text: 715-520-2659
- Fax: 715-468-7638
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Together, we can make our community a safer and healthier place to work, live, and play. I look forward to ideas and suggestions from you as we work together to achieve this goal.
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