Monday, August 9, 2004

Independence police chief tops in state



By Cindy Schroeder
Enquirer staff writer

INDEPENDENCE - The chief of this fast-growing Kenton County city has been named the Kentucky Police Chief of the Year by his peers.

Shawn Butler, 39, was recognized at the Kentucky Association of Chiefs of Police annual dinner last week in Louisville. The association has about 500 members.

[img]
Independence Police Chief Shawn Butler (left) talks with officer Anthony Hill in the department's patrol office.
(Enquirer photo/PATRICK REDDY)
"Chief Butler's work with the Citizens Police Academy and its alumni association is very impressive," said Maysville Police Chief Van Ingram, the association's outgoing president. "The Independence Police Department is very involved in the community."

Independence Mayor Chris Moriconi said he's proud of his city's police chief.

"Shawn works hard, and he's done a lot to bring Community Oriented Policing to Independence," Moriconi said. "He gets the community involved through programs like the Citizens Police Academy. Their alumni association is raising money for the police department. He's also developed a program where volunteers come in and help the police department with paperwork."

Butler has been chief of the 26-member department for four years.

This fall, he will oversee its move into a new municipal complex by Fire Station One off Madison Pike.

Butler joined the department 10 years ago after a nine-year stint with the Kenton County Sheriff's Department.

Last year, the Northern Kentucky Area Development District named Butler Police Chief of the Year. He is the past president of the Northern Kentucky and Kenton County Police Chiefs Associations.

As chief, Butler started one of Northern Kentucky's first Citizens Police Academies in 2000. The eight-week program helps residents understand police officers' jobs and teaches them how to prevent crime in their community.

Through the new Volunteers of Police Service Program, graduates of the Citizens Police Academy help police handle traffic and parking for the (Fourth of July) parade, assist with the child ID program and do data processing so that police can spend more time on the streets, Butler said.

Butler also obtained federal grants to put resource officers in all four schools in the city.

"I really appreciate this honor and I'm thrilled to death, but I couldn't do it without all the good people who work with me, not only the employees and the citizens, but the people in city government who've supported us and allowed us to do our job," Butler said.

---

E-mail cschroeder@enquirer.com




ENQUIRER COLUMNS
Home builders back Clooney
Democrat taking stroll to Cleveland
Grant puts golf clubs into youths' hands

TOP LOCAL HEADLINES
10,000 letters wish Maupin home
T-shirt trend worries cops
Stent patients reassured
2-year-old drowns at religious gathering
Air marshals too easy to spot?
TV peeks into jury room
Indiana fair set for big crowds
Driver charged after crash kills passenger
Local news briefs

KENTUCKY HEADLINES
Boaters study river science
Independence police chief tops in state
Proposed rule change for political signs revised
Computer 'phishing' fraud worms way into Kentucky
Cabbie's killer accused of 2nd murder
Both drivers dead in Trimble Co. crash

EDUCATION
War in Iraq made real
Summer school refusal riles
Online college credits slow to delete skeptical views

NEIGHBORS
Mariemont Inn plan stymied
With this couple's help, the show will go on
Soccer nearby worries Rozzi's Fireworks

LIVES REMEMBERED
Ronald Downey a civic leader
Ed's Barbershop a gathering place