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5611 Manchester Road
Akron, Ohio 44319
Greetings from the Chief of Police
Daniel G. Davidson
Chief of Police
The mission of the New Franklin Police Department is to enforce the laws of the State of Ohio and to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America. Our objective is to protect and serve the citizens of the community by promoting citizen involvement in crime reduction efforts, by providing open and honest appraisal by the Police Department of the concerns of the citizens of New Franklin, by training and equipping our officers to enable them to perform their duties and responsibilities in a professional manner, and by holding the employees of this department to the highest standards of ethics, courage, respect, and impartiality.
As the township grew, a need arose for increased police services. In response to this need, the Board of Trustees decided that a separate department should be created as a supplement to the Summit County Sheriff’s Office. On November 1, 1976, the Franklin Township Police Department was formed. Jerry Sharrock, a Captain with the Summit County Sheriff's Office (SCSO), was chosen to serve as the Chief of Police. In addition to Chief Sharrock, that first department consisted of one full-time and one reserve police officer. Chief Sharrock led the department until his retirement, in 1990. After Chief Sharrock's retirement, Ronald Fuhs was Chief from 1990 to 1995. The Department became the New Franklin Police Department after the merger between Franklin Township and New Franklin Village. In 2006, the City of New Franklin was formed.
Rank and File
The New Franklin Police Department currently consists of the Chief of Police, one Lieutenant, one Sergeant, one Corporal, nine full-time officers and ten part-time officers, who are supported by a civilian Administrative Assistant. The department’s members are committed to serving an area of approximately 34 square miles, which includes not only New Franklin, but also the Village of Clinton, with which we have a contract for services.
The Patrol Division, headed by Lieutenant Ed Klein, is responsible for the day-to-day operation of the uniformed section of the department. They provide the marked police patrol units that are on duty 24 hours per day, in each neighborhood in New Franklin. The Patrol Division handled over 10,000 calls for service, in 2007. Types of calls include motor vehicle accidents, assaults, burglaries, domestic violence, traffic enforcement, residential and commercial alarm drops, criminal trespassing, disturbances, and a variety of other criminal and non-criminal offenses. Also a member of the county wide Special Weapons and Tactics (S.W.A.T.) team.
The Detective Bureau, consisting of two detectives, is responsible for handling a variety of matters, which include preparing cases for trial, conducting covert operations, performing background investigations, following up on outstanding warrants, investigating unsolved crimes, recovering stolen property, processing crime scenes, and apprehending offenders. While a portion of their work includes cases involving such things as retail loss (bad checks,) their primary responsibility is for felony investigations. Detective Michael Hitchings is in charge of the Detective Bureau.
The Police Department is complemented by an emergency dispatch center, which is operational twenty-four hours per day, seven days per week. It is the central answering point for all radio transmissions and telephone calls within the office. The civilian dispatchers are responsible for answering 9-1-1 police, fire and EMS emergency calls, as well as calls of a non-emergency nature.
Dispatchers utilize state-of-the-art technology to assist them in sending resources to various incidents. All emergency calls for police are directed through the Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system, which allows the dispatcher to enter, monitor and terminate calls for service, and to direct the safety force response, as well as to keep track of calls being handled, calls pending, units assigned and units available.
The Enhanced 9-1-1 screen permits the dispatchers to see the address from which the emergency 9-1-1 call has originated, the phone number at that location, and the resident or business name. This facilitates the call-taking process by eliminating the need for the caller to spell out their name and address, possibly during a panic situation.
Information vital to the safety of the officers, is provided by Dispatchers, who utilize the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) to track stolen vehicles or weapons; to locate or log missing persons; and to search for, or to enter, felony warrants. Ohio’s Law Enforcement Automated Data System (LEADS) is used to obtain information such as vehicle registrations and driver data.
Under the direction of the Dispatch Supervisor, Judy Smith, the dispatch center is staffed by five full-time and two part-time dispatchers.
The New Franklin Police Department K-9 Unit has proven to be a great asset to the law enforcement endeavor in New Franklin.
The purpose of a professional police canine is to reduce the jeopardy to the police officer and to better enforce the laws of the community. The canine is a psychological deterrent to the lawbreaker, but at the same time, the canine must develop a positive image in the public eye. Although the canine will never replace the police officer, the canine is a unique tool, which enhances law enforcement performance. Statistics have proven that “canines” offer an alternative to deadly force, with less injuries and assaults on police officers.
New Franklin’s K-9 Unit is comprised of Officer John Heimbaugh and his canine partner, “Zeus”, a Belgium Malinois. Zeus is a highly trained, full-utility K-9 officer with general patrol and narcotics detection certifications. Zeus lives with Officer Heimbaugh. During duty hours, Zeus rides in a specially equipped patrol vehicle.
|K-9 Officer "Zeus"|
New Franklin’s previous K-9 Unit consisted of handler Lieutenant Ed Klein and his German Shepherd partner “Rebel” and handler Jeff Hagen and his German Shepherd partner “Saber.” Both Rebel and Saber retired from the K-9 Unit in 2006.
K-9 Officer "Rebel"
K-9 Officer "Saber"
In December of 2002, Rebel was involved in a drug seizure of 84 kilos of cocaine, which was one of the largest drug seizures in Ohio’s history. Good dog!
Frequently, our K-9 teams put on demonstrations for our local school children, church pre-schoolers, the Kiwanis Boys and Girls, Cub and Tiger Scouts, as well as the Rotary Club’s Camp Quality USA, a non-profit organization, which provides camping experiences for children with cancer.
Children and adults alike are impressed with the obedience, intelligence and skill of the canines, during demonstrations. Also impressive, is the gentleness the canines display when being petted by the young program participants.
The Community Policing Program is a partnership between the residents and the law enforcement agency. It allows the residents to have an interactive role in the policing of their neighborhoods. Officer Garry Prebynski is in charge of our Community Policing Program.
Over seven different neighborhoods have chosen to participate in our Neighborhood Watch Program, a program which involves citizens working with their local police department, by assisting in the prevention and detection of crime. Residents are trained to recognize suspicious activities and are encouraged to contact the police when something out of the ordinary is observed. Police officers will then respond promptly and will determine if criminal activity is occurring. In addition to teaching residents how to be better witnesses, Neighborhood Watch members are taught various crime prevention tips.
Our Senior Watch Program participants receive frequent telephone calls and visits from the Community Policing Officer. In some cases, these individuals have no family members to check on their welfare. The Community Policing Officer provides these senior citizens with a feeling of safety and security. Also, he makes arrangements to get them the help they need.
One appreciative Senior Watch participant wrote the following, on March 31, 2003:
“I wish to express my gratitude for the fine service provided by the Community Policing Unit which is so essential to those of us who are in need of their service. It is great to know that someone really cares and (is) there for us if the need arises. I believe (the Community Policing Officer) genuinely cares about those who he visits to check on their welfare. ”
Officer Hagen is also involved in the Take-Me-Home Program which is a program designed to help in the location of autistic or special needs children in our area.
School Resource Officer
The School Resource Officer is a resource for the administrators, staff, parents and students. The Officer lends assistance with daily problems that occur at the schools, including conflict resolution, truancy and safety issues (violence, drugs, etc.), The students are taught to understand the rules and laws, and the consequences of misbehavior.
The Officer also assists in the educational process of students and staff. Students have received instruction on aspects of law, youth violence, drug and alcohol awareness, bullying, and gun safety. One such program is Escape School, a training program which teaches children how to escape from a potentially dangerous stranger.
The D.A.R.E. Program (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is an internationally recognized, model program created in 1983 by the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles Unified School District.
D.A.R.E. Officer Garry Prebynski is certified in the K-4, Elementary and Middle school Curriculums. Officer Prebynski l completed eighty (80) hours of intensive training by Ohio's accredited Training Center conducted by the Ohio Peace Officers Training Academy in London, Ohio;. In January 2013,Officer Prebynski has begun teaching the D.A.R.E. Program in the Manchester Local schools'
In the near future, we will institute the Street Law Program, which provides practical, participatory education about law, democracy, and human rights. The program enables people to transform democratic ideals into citizen action. The curricula offers classes for students, parents and teachers. The program also encourages career fairs and workshops, speeches by prosecutors or victim service coordinators, job shadowing, and tours of the Summit County Courthouse.
The School Resource Officer has carried the philosophy of community policing into the schools. He has been able to create a sense of community ownership of the schools and has been instrumental in maintaining a safe school environment.
Through the Stranger Danger Program, children have learned ways to stay safe by being alert and cautious around strangers. Each year, we participate in the Bike Rodeo, a program which teaches bicycle rules and which promotes bicycle safety.
Also, frequent discussions are held with local pre-school classes to assist them in feeling more comfortable around police officers and to teach them that police officers are their friends. This program also makes them more aware of a police officers’ duties and responsibilities.
We often provide our local school children with coloring books, key chains, pens, T-shirts, mugs, etc., as a reminder of our anti-drug message.
The Juvenile Diversion Program headed by Sergeant Jeff Hagan, is a voluntary program that utilizes community based resources and specialized contracts between the juvenile offender, parents/guardian and the New Franklin Juvenile Diversion Unit. This program is an alternative to going through the Juvenile Court system and having a juvenile record.
If the juvenile completes the program and does not commit any new offenses for two years, his/her record will be expunged. If the juvenile does re-offend while still in the program, he/she is subject to additional sanctions for breaking his/her contract. Or, he/she may be terminated from the program, depending on the nature of the offense committed.
The Juvenile Diversion Program is designed to work with first time juvenile offenders who have committed misdemeanor offenses only. The Diversion Unit personnel will make the determination on an individual basis, regarding the juvenile’s eligibility. Some of the reasons for not accepting a juvenile into the program would be if there were a need for extensive psychological counseling, or drug and alcohol treatment and counseling. If the juvenile is not accepted into the Diversion Program, he/she will be referred to Juvenile Court.
It has been documented throughout the country that this program is successful because it is designed to hold juvenile offenders accountable for the crimes they have committed, to prevent future offenses, and to provide intervention services. More importantly, the offenders give back to the community in the form of community service and/or restitution. For this program to work in the life of the juvenile, it is imperative that both youths and parents are aware of the process and procedures of the program.
The police department will check your house while you are away on vacation for any length of time. To arrange for this service, please stop by the police department so that we can obtain the necessary information from you. Please be prepared to provide your:
- Home telephone number
- Date you are leaving
- Date you are returning
- Alarm company information
- Emergency contact information
- Key holder’s information (name, telephone number)
- Information regarding any vehicles being left at the residence
- Any additional information regarding your home and/or the party responsible for your home during your absence
The New Franklin Police Department can fingerprint individuals through electronic fingerprinting equipment. The Ohio Attorney-General's Bureau of Criminal lnvestigation (BCI) and Federal Bureau of Criminal lnvestigation (FBI) regulates the fee for processing fingerprints. The fees are as follows:
We will fingerprint the children of City residents, at no cost, which can serve as a vital tool for their protection.
New Franklin's Police Department also provides child identification cards. These can be obtained by contacting Officer Prebynski by calling the Police Department at (330) 882-3281. During certain events, you may notice officers providing the information and, if available, providing the identification cards as well.