An example of a police body camera. (Photo courtesy of Axon)

An example of a police body camera. (Photo courtesy of Axon)

Grants from Dept. of Justice help fund body cameras for KC Sheriff’s Office

Auburn police received $38,323 in funding for the department’s fireworks emphasis patrols.

Various law enforcement agencies in Western Washington have received grant funding to support local agency needs, including funding for Auburn’s fireworks emphasis patrols along with a body-worn camera program and the hiring of mental health professionals for the King County Sheriff’s Office.

The U.S. Department of Justice awarded the recipients of the Byrne Grant funding in advance of the new fiscal year, according to the Department of Justice.

Auburn police received $38,323 in funding for the department’s fireworks emphasis patrols and the King County Sheriff’s Office received more than $2 million for the implementation of body-worn cameras and the hiring of mental health professionals as part of the King County Crisis Intervention team.

Body-worn cameras and mental health professionals

According to Sgt. Eric White, public information officer for the King County Sheriff’s Office, the agency received $1 million to support body-worn camera equipment and training, $1 million for a co-response program, and $348,285 for a Crisis Intervention Team research project.

The body-worn camera system serves as an ongoing implementation since 2022, according to White’s email. The agency aims for a completion date for the body-worn camera system in June 2024 — dependent on whether there are any delays on delivery or training classes for the cameras.

As of October 2023, the agency has 210 body-worn cameras deployed and 50 in-vehicle cameras deployed.

The King County Sheriff’s Office, in accordance with the True North Mission, is developing an agency-wide Co-Response Program-Therapeutic Response Unit.

The therapeutic response unit will partner licensed mental health professionals with deputies and officers who respond to calls for service that have behavioral health and social service components.

The agency hired mental health professional Susie Kroll at the beginning of September 2023 to design and implement the therapeutic response unit for the King County Sheriff’s Office, according to White’s email. Kroll, agency staff, and social services providers are collaborating to develop a response to a budget provision that will provide additional detail on the delivery of services.

The first mental health professional will be hired by the end of 2023, according to White’s email.

“[The King County Sheriff’s Office] is looking forward to building a robust team to serve in all our contract cities and precincts in 2024,” stated White in his email.

Fireworks emphasis patrols

According to Chief Mark Caillier of the Auburn Police Department, the department has received grant funding for the department’s fireworks emphasis patrols for more than 10 years.

The department uses the funding strictly for staffing to pay for an officer to focus specifically on fireworks-related calls starting around June 20-21 every year, according to Caillier.

“The tribal stands start going up after Memorial Day, so the officer performing the emphasis will also check on activity or issues at the stands and assist as needed,” Caillier saod in an email. “We try to focus on education instead of enforcement, but we have city ordinances [the] officer can cite under if appropriate.”

In addition to the emphasis officer leading up to the Fourth of July holiday, the grant also helps fund the extra staffing utilized on the Fourth of July and the various fireworks shows that fireworks stands and the Emerald Downs racetrack showcase.

As a part of the Muckleshoot reservation lies within the city limits, fireworks are allowed to be sold earlier than conventional stands, according to Caillier.

“The nature of the fireworks that may be legal for purchase and discharge on the reservation, are not legal in the rest of the state or city, so the sheer call volume of fireworks related complaints happens for a longer period of time,” Caillier stated in the email.

Additional recipients

Additional recipients included the City of Seattle, awarded $918,880; $10,861 for de-escalation tools in Des Moines; $11,310 for less lethal equipment in Shoreline; $369,623 to help fund anti-crime coordinators in Seattle; $39,544 for polygraph and police pursuit equipment in Everett; and $358,803 to Tacoma for youth crime reduction programs.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

t
Kent Police seek man who reportedly tried to kidnap girl from apartment

Man allegedly reached into bathroom window to grab girl in attempted kidnapping

t
Kent Police arrest man, 18, in fatal shooting of 13-year-old boy

Judge finds probable cause to hold the Kent man for murder, attempted murder and robbery

The Judge Patricia H. Clark Children and Family Justice Center in Seattle that handles juvenile detention. COURTESY PHOTO, King County
High-profile juvenile crimes continue to rock Kent this summer

Six incidents in five weeks include fatal shooting, vehicular homicide, vehicular assault

King County Correctional Facility in Seattle. COURTESY PHOTO, King County
Kent man charged with attempted kidnapping of 6-year-old girl

40-year-old man allegedly try to take girl from apartment complex parking lot

Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent. FILE PHOTO
Kent man receives 8-year sentence in 2021 fatal shooting

Pleaded guilty to lesser charge of manslaughter in shooting at apartment complex over parking dispute

Courtesy Photo, King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office
Judge finds probable cause to hold Kent man for kidnapping girl

Man, 40, reportedly grabbed 6-year-old girl in East Hill apartment complex parking lot

t
King County residential property values rise 12.4% in SE Kent

King County Assessor John Wilson begins to release 2024 numbers

t
Three 11-year-old girls in Kent help stop kidnapping of 6-year-old girl

40-year-old man reportedly grabbed girl in apartment complex parking lot on East Hill

t
Kent Police seek male teen driver in fatal hit-and-run on East Hill | Update

Teen reportedly driving stolen vehicle and fleeing police during Saturday, July 13 incident; victim identified

t
13-year-old boy fatally shot in Kent on East Hill near Turnkey Park | Update

Boy found shot near apartment complex Tuesday night, July 16 identified by medical examiner

t
Kent School Board votes 3-1 to send levy to voters in November

Capital projects and technology levy reduced from $192 million to $97 million after previous failures