Arts & Living Editor
The Troy University Police Department (TUPD) is undergoing more changes this semester to improve campus safety and student convenience with the department.
The TUPD recently added three new Ford F-150 trucks and one new Ford Explorer to the fleet, which Police Chief John McCall said he hopes will make student emergencies easier to respond to.
“We have opted to go with trucks for our policing needs,” McCall said. “They allow us to move things around campus such as traffic cones and light trees, as well as assist students with things such as broken bicycles or flat tires.”
McCall also said that over the next few years, the department hopes to replace more of the older patrol cars with more trucks as they are more cost efficient and require less maintenance. TUPD has also added some trucks obtained from the U.S. military’s redistribution program, and they will last a few years..
Additionally, the new trucks are marked with new “Power T” decals to give officers and students a sense of university pride.
In addition to the expanded fleet, the department has hired one new officer to return the school’s police force to full capacity, as it was in the fall of 2019. McCall said he is looking into grant programs to get funding for a larger force in the future, especially female officers to assist with female victim cases.
Other future improvements include updated camera systems, including a license plate reading camera.
“Sex offenders, criminals that have been trespassed from campus, stolen vehicles, known drug dealers can be added to the database and it will allow the officers to become pro-active instead of reactive,” said Officer Patrick Hamilton. “It is better to stop a crime before it occurs than investigate one that already happened.“These cameras will allow that.”
Officers have also completed extra training for active shooter and crisis situations.
“I can really appreciate that the university is continually making improvements for our safety,” said Erin McMichen, a junior nursing major from Alexander City, Alabama. “Feeling safe and taken care of is vital to being a woman on college campuses, and it is refreshing to know that the university is actively taking precautions to be better.”