APD Annual Reports - 2013 Annual Report - Page 21

East District - Project REACH (Rejuvenating Arlington, Creating Hope) is the culmination on how APD retooled the successful East Arlington’s Weed and Seed initiative after Congress eliminated funding in 2012. In 2013, Project REACH was reconstructed as a school-centric initiative with the after-school mentorship program at Thornton elementary. East foot patrol officers currently serve as mentors to identified youth at Thornton for six hours a week. The district also hosts an outreach opportunity with the community through teaching English with our English as a Second Language (ESL) program in partnership with a local church. These community-based efforts align with Arlington ISD’s multi-year strategic plan emphasizing community engagement and the value of partnerships which also support the City Council priority of supporting quality education. The success of this program is now being replicated in other police districts around the city. South District – The South Retail District Unit (SRDU) is comprised of one sergeant and seven officers. The mission of the SRDU is to reduce crime, protect commercial properties, and ensure visitors to major retail areas are safe and welcome. This is accomplished through a focused patrol approach that utilizes foot, bicycle, and vehicle patrol. SRDU maintains in-depth business partnerships that continue to evolve for the betterment of this vast retail area that includes a traditional mall, a large urban retail district area, hospital, and numerous restaurants and hotels. West District – The K9 Unit is a specialized component that was established in 1979 and now consists of one sergeant and three K9 teams that assist patrol city-wide. The K9 Unit regularly assists patrol with locating and apprehending felony suspects, conducting searches, and assists on felony in-progress calls for service. The team also connects with the community during special events with visits to local schools and special venues to highlight the work that our dogs perform every day. There is extensive training that is conducted throughout the year to keep our canines ready for patrol operations. During 2013, K9 teams responded to more than 1,233 assignments. 19