Kitsap Crime and Justice

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Chief: Violence, Incidents ‘Will Likely Increase’ Without SRO

July 14th, 2008 by josh farley

How will North Kitsap’s schools look without a school resource officer? Dennis Swiney shared his thoughts with a North Kitsap School Board member in a letter dated June 30.

Swiney, Poulsbo’s police chief, sent this letter to board member Tom Anderson advising against cutting the district’s school resource police officer (or “SRO”) funding, saying that without it, “violence as well as other criminal issues such as drug possession will likely increase.” The school district faces a $2.8 million budget shortfall.

School resource officers — and their importance in introducing kids to law enforcement — has been a frequent topic of discussion here. Currently, Bremerton, South Kitsap and North Mason schools have one. Central Kitsap and Bainbridge have gone without them.

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2 Responses to “Chief: Violence, Incidents ‘Will Likely Increase’ Without SRO”

  1. North Kitsap Beat » Blog Archive » Do Schools Need Police Officers? Says:

    [...] Farley, our cops and courts reporter, wrote an entry today about a letter Poulsbo Police Chief Dennis Swiney wrote [PDF] to North Kitsap School Board member [...]

  2. Sharon O'Hara Says:

    Does anyone doubt children disrespect law enforcement or are afraid of them? The upswing in property damage probably wouldn’t happen if the kids had respect or regard for the law.

    It is ironic that the very school district letting the police officer go in order to keep a swimming pool is NK. The very school district my granddaughter attended and I was privileged to visit on Grandparents Day.

    I was impressed by the well organized and well attended Show & Tell for grandparents until the teacher brought out a new book she was thrilled to present and have the class read from. It had only just arrived.

    One of the stories showed police as cartoon pigs – cheerful buffoons. I can yet hear the snickers and giggles from the children. I objected to a surprised teacher afterward that such portrayals ridiculed a profession that children should be able to trust and depend on.

    Having a police officer on duty at school helps teach children that law enforcement aren’t piggies to laugh at nor stumbling piggy buffoons.

    They learn that officers are people trained to help and be a friend.
    They learn to trust the law again and confide in them to avert future problems at school and at home.

    NK please reconsider.
    Sharon O’Hara

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