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NEWS CENTER

UTA Police Department garners annual UT System award

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Media Contact: Herb Booth, Office: 817-272-7075, Cell: 214-546-1082, hbooth@uta.edu

News Topics: awards, staff

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The University of Texas at Arlington Police Department has been named the 2016 Pacesetter Police Department of the Year.

The Pacesetter Award is presented to the police department within the University of Texas System that demonstrates a strong and professional commitment to public safety and contemporary policing over the past year and, in doing so, sets an example for other institution police departments to follow.

UTA Police Chief Kim Lemaux

Michael Heidingsfield, the UT System director of police, left, presents UTA Police Chief Kim Lemaux with the 2016 Pacesetter Award.

UTA Chief Kim Lemaux received the award in New Braunfels at a conference for all UT System institution police departments from Michael Heidingsfield, the UT System director of police. The UT System has eight academic and six medical institutions. The UT System includes 575 officers in all, making it the third largest state law enforcement agency in Texas.

“This award goes to the chief of police and police department that is leading the way for their peers,” Heidingsfield said. “Chief Lemaux is a true gift to us here at the University of Texas System Police.”

Chief Lemaux said the award is truly a team effort. The department has 44 budgeted officer positions.

“Each person in the UTA Police Department has contributed to this recognition. We also would not have been able to achieve all of the successes we’ve enjoyed this year without the support from President Vistasp M. Karbhari, Vice President John Hall and all of our partners throughout the campus,” Lemaux said.

Hall said the department has undergone efforts that have reduced crime about 45 percent when comparing this year to 2014.

More strategic deployment of resources, increased foot and bike patrols, increased community interactions, directed patrols in hot spots and partnering with students, faculty and staff to maximize prevention efforts all have played a part in the overall crime rate reduction.

“One partnership with the library has reduced thefts 63 percent there,” Hall said.

In addition, Hall said the police department also has updated to digital cameras throughout campus, and forged partnerships with agencies, UT System and the City of Arlington Police Department to help reduce crime.

And Hall said future police efforts should continue to reduce crime rates.

“The police department is starting the Students on Patrol program that enlists students to be more eyes and ears on campus,” Hall said. “That program asks students to report anything that looks odd around campus, and allows the police department to put more feet on the street.”

Hall said the University also is employing sky-watch towers in parking lots as another means of increasing police presence.

In addition, Hall said the police department is working on continuing to add cameras, more effectively compiling and using crime data to further intelligence-led policing efforts and searching for additional funding to increase patrol staffing.

Hall said everyone in the police department has embraced these new policing concepts.

“Chief Lemaux and her department are leading the way in campus policing,” Hall said. “We believe these additional initiatives will continue to lead to crime reductions.”

About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie Research-1 “highest research activity” institution of about 55,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. The University is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at www.uta.edu/uta/about/rankings.php.

For more on the UTA Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact, see www.uta.edu/strategicplan/

 

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The University of Texas at Arlington is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer.