Features :: Black History Month
06, 2007 by Teri
Page 2 of
observance of Black History Month we will take a look at some featured SBPD officers
and thier functions at the South Bend Police Department!
Sworn in- 1982
Law Enforcement Academy) Certified Instructor
Explorer Program Coordinator
Training Division /Community Relations
never really thought about being a Police Officer until my ex-husband talked me
into it. We were both in school at IUSB and he thought I would make a great officer.
I liked working in the community...I like people...I like working with kids; so
this would be the perfect job."
Lt. Mattie Taylor smiles when
she recalls making that decision. She said she never really made up her mind until
she was in the police academy two weeks. Lt. Taylor stated, "I finally realized
this was the place for me…a career where I could reach others and possibly make
a difference. I can still say after 24 years, I still enjoy being a police officer."
She recalled, "My most rewarding moments came when I was a DARE Officer in
the schools. Just having a positive impact on so many kids did my heart proud.
DARE was more than just teaching kids to resist drugs. DARE taught life skills."
She laughed and added, "To this day, I run into former DARE students of mine
who will still run up to me and give me a hug and say thanks (no matter how cool
they are when walking through the mall)!"
"Another great time
was being allowed by the department to become part of the International Security
Police Team at the 1996 Olympics. I was there for approximately six weeks. I had
a chance to work with police officers from all over the world. I have maintained
relationships with some of those officers. It's not unusual to receive email from
Australia or Germany or France. I think that is so cool! One officer from Canada
and another from Mexico attended my wedding. I will forever be grateful for that
experience," shared Lt. Taylor.
She continued,"In this job I
have had an opportunity to experience many things. Travel places I would have
never gone. I worked on every uniform shift, dispatch center, front desk, narcotics
bureau, detective bureau, the bike patrol, DARE, and now in training. With everything
I have experienced in my career, it has made me a well-rounded person. I feel
that I have made a difference in the community I serve." "There is a
saying, 'Each One; Reach One.' I feel I have reached many."
Lieutenant Mattie Taylor
Civilian Donna Stevens
Joined in 1993
Secretary Investigative Division
"I thought this might be a great opportunity to work with people
in need of help."
with a smile for the Detective Bureau is Donna Steven's demeanor that is much
appreciated by police officers and the public alike. She said she first saw an
ad in the newspaper for Front Desk Personnel for the South Bend Police Department,
applied and was hired. And being that she was looking for an opportunity to help
people, the goals of the police department "to protect and serve" are
keeping her busy on a daily basis. Her days can span anywhere from answering questions
on the phone, directing people to appointments with investigators to tracking
44 division officers' comings and goings.
But one of the most enjoyable
aspects of many responsibilities is her work in the Pawn Shop Detail, assisting
Investigator Scott Bryant and entering most of the Pawn Shop Data for tracking.
She explained, "When I get a hit on a pawn item that had been stolen from
a victim in a burglary or larceny it makes me feel all the time and effort I put
into the pawn shop detail is worth it. I really enjoy this!"
grinned and continued, "There are some really weird things that turn up though...like
teeth! It was scary to think about that; I asked Scott to look into it. I mean,
would we be looking for bodies next? What was this person doing? Well, it ended
up making sense when we found it was a retired dentist that explained more people
than you might think never come get their teeth; and gold and silver fillings
are quite valuable." Case solved-and it's on to the next.
We have assembled an extensive display of the heritage of Black Police Officers
in the history of the South Bend Police Department, which is on display in the
main lobby of the central police station, at 701 W Sample St.
will be featured through the month of February 2007. We invite you to stop by
for more photos, exhibits and more!
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