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December 8, 2016

Community Update by George Crum
Police Chief

As I complete my second year as your Police Chief in Cathedral City I want to take this opportunity to tell you about three employees who were recently recognized for their excellent work ethic and contributions to Cathedral City in 2016. Officer Dwayne Hodge, Dispatcher Jennifer Nellis and Volunteer David Bryan were recognized last month at the 20th Annual Peace Officer and Public Safety Luncheon in Rancho Mirage for their dedication and hard work in their respective fields.

Officer Dwayne Hodge was named Officer of the Year for his work as the Department’s Homeless Liaison Officer. The Cathedral City Police Department implemented a Homeless Liaison Officer Program in November 2015 which was designed to compassionately handle issues and problems related to homelessness and develop solutions to the complicated and intertwined problems of mental health as well as chemical and alcohol dependency.  The program provides the homeless and Cathedral City residents and business owners with an officer as a point-of-contact for enforcement of municipal codes, criminal codes and problem solving with the goal of improving quality of life.

During the year, Officer Hodge responded to 372 homeless related calls for service. In comparison, the rest of the department responded to 465 homeless related calls for service.  Officer Hodge has made 55 homeless related arrests and written numerous citations related to criminal and municipal code violations.  However, the department is most proud of his efforts to reunite people with their families in their respective hometowns.  Reuniting a family member is not as simple as buying them a bus ticket home.  Officer Hodge contacts family members and verifies they will be met with a safe return home to their family and community.  He has reunited over 12 people with family members since the inception of this program. In addition, he has successfully placed over 18 people into various programs at CVRM and works daily – not to move our less fortunate transient residents into another town – but to help them to “get off of the street.”

Officer Hodge does not have an assignment that is glamourous; at times it is more dangerous to his health than the job of a gang officer or SWAT officer, yet he has accepted the added hazards and perils.  He knows that his down-to-earth approachability and his no-nonsense mannerisms help business owners and the less fortunate find solutions to their issues while improving the quality of life for the residents of Cathedral City. 

Dispatcher Jennifer Nellis was recognized as the Dispatcher of the Year for her handling of a sexual assault call on Sunday September 28, 2016 at approximately 0138 hours. Nightshift Officers were dispatched to a residence regarding an armed sexual predator. The suspect had fled the scene and Officers worked throughout the night in an effort to identify and locate the suspect.

When Dayshift came on duty, both Dispatch and Patrol dayshift employees were briefed with pertinent details regarding the suspect, vehicle and evidence.  In part the information provided during briefing included possible suspect items left at the scene as a result of the suspect being interrupted. There had also been a suspicious occupied vehicle check that came in from the area of the residence. Officers were dispatched to the location of the suspicious occupied vehicle but the vehicle was gone from the scene by the time officers arrived.

At approximately 0933 officers were dispatched to the Rite Aid on Ramon Rd at Date Palm due to a suspicious male subject who had been in the bathroom for an extended length of time. Officers conducted a brief investigation but there appeared to be no crime. However, further diligence on the part of Dispatcher Nellis prompted her to contact Officer(s) at the scene alerting them to the suspicious vehicle seen near the victim’s residence earlier in the morning. Dispatcher Nellis provided Officers with additional details regarding the connection to the sexual assault enabling Officers to identify and arrest the suspect for numerous felonies; with additional enhancements and his bail was set at 1.1 million dollars.  

Dispatcher Nellis’ perceptive analysis of details associated with a sexual assault was communicated to Officers in the field and provided a link between property left at the crime scene and the subject now stopped at Rite Aid.  Dispatcher Nellis’ actions resulted in the apprehension of this sexual predator before he could strike again.

Volunteer David Bryan was named Volunteer of the Year for his outstanding contribution to community service, dedication to our agency and unmatched work ethic. In May of this year, David was approached with the idea of applying his experience and expertise in the testing and evaluation of body worn cameras for patrol officers in the field. It wasn’t but a week later, David took full responsibility of the project and spearheaded the most comprehensive product evaluation the Body Worn Camera industry has seen to date. David accepted an unbelievable amount of responsibility when he agreed to this product evaluation which was no easy task. David logged hundreds of hours in this endeavor at both the Cathedral City Police Department and at home. Every vendor whose product was subjected to David’s intense scrutiny unanimously agreed their product and company has never been evaluated to the extent David Bryan’s research imposed. At the conclusion of his research, he presented an expert recommendation through a Power point presentation and a 127 page product review comparison, which spanned 3 months of grueling research. 

News

Just met with the Tequila City Council working on several projects to share resources

Tequila City Council working on several projects to share resources

Just met with the Tequila City Council working on several projects to share resources

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Upcoming Events

Cathedral City Cove Art Party for Children & Elders

Cathedral City Cove Art Party for Children & Elders

NEW TIME THIS MONTH: Cathedral City Art Gallery (City Hall) The SCRAP Gallery and the Agnes Pelton Society hosts the Children and Elders monthly Art Party at the Cathedral City Art Gallery, 68700 Avenida Lalo Guerrero (adjacent to City Hall), on the Second Saturday of each month from 1-3 PM.   Admission is free. Participants create … Read more.

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Assemblymember Garcia Community Coffee & CHiPs for Kids in Cathedral City

Assemblymember Garcia Community Coffee & CHiPs for Kids in Cathedral City

Season’s greetings! You are cordially invited to join Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia for a Community Coffee & CHiPs for Kids Toy Drive in Cathedral City. Come join in some holiday cheer, receive a legislative update and mingle with your community members. In partnership with California Highway Patrol, attendees are invited to bring new, unwrapped toys to share with children in need. Date: …

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Movies in the Park

Movies in the Park

Gather the family, blankets and/or chairs for “Movies in the Park” located this season at Ocotillo Park, 33300 Moreno Road in Cathedral City.  The free event every month at 7:00 pm, except for the month of May, which begins at 8:30 pm due to daylight savings time.

You are welcome to bring snacks or non-alcoholic drinks, but you can also purchase them from the movie organizers at the park’s concession stand.  Great Family FUN!

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28th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival

28th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival

The Palm Springs International Film Festival is a portal for the very best in world cinema, welcoming more than 136,000 enthusiastic filmgoers.  For the second year in a row, the film festival will utilize the Mary Pickford Theatre in Downtown Cathedral City to showcase many of the films.

For tickets and all information about the festival, go to www.PSFilmFest.org  Read more.

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Shred Event - Stop Identity Theft

Shred Event - Stop Identity Theft

To help stop identity theft and as a service to its residents, the City of Cathedral City is hosting free document shredding events.  The shredding events are the first Saturday of each month, October thru May of each year.

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Town Square Art Affaire- Art Show

Town Square Art Affaire- Art Show

"Town Square Art Affaire" presented by West Coasts Artists comes to Cathedral City on January 21 and 22, 2017 from 10 am to 5 pm.  This event showcases high quality art from more than 70 artists.  It will also be located on the new Festival Lawn along East Palm Canyon Drive. Read more.

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2nd Annual Taste of Jalisco Festival

2nd Annual Taste of Jalisco Festival

Taste of Jalisco celebrates the relationship between Cathedral City and its sister city, Tequila, Jalisco (Mexico) through music, fashion, spirits, culture and cuisine.  It is a time to recognize the strength in our diversity,  appreciate our similarities, and stand united as one community for the betterment of our great city.  

For Sponsorship or Booth Rental Opportunities, contact: Eric Davis, City of Cathedral City (760) 770-0340, Ext. 134 SponsorshipSpecialist@cathedralcity.gov    Read more.

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Antiques Appraisal Day at the Cathedral City Senior Center

Antiques Appraisal Day at the Cathedral City Senior Center

Have you always wanted to go to an Antiques Roadshow event? Are you ready to discover the value of your family heirloom? Join us on Saturday, March 18th, 2017 where certified dealers and appraisers will be on hand to offer their expertise, Roadshow style, at the Cathedral City Senior Center, 37-171 West Buddy Rogers Avenue.  Appraisals on your items from 9am to 2pm ...Read more.

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3rd Annual Cathedral City LGBT Days

3rd Annual Cathedral City LGBT Days

For all information, CLICK HERE

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