Houston Police Department Featured as February “Community Policing in Action” Photo Contest Winner

For Immediate Release: 
Wednesday, February 15, 2017
Najla Haywood
(202) 598-5303

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) is pleased to announce that the Houston Police Department is featured as its February “Community Policing in Action” photo contest winner.

The winning photo features Houston Police Officer Jeremy Lahar spending time with a young girl at Houston’s Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital during a Badges and Bears visit. Badges and Bears was the idea of Officer Lahar after spending many hours in a local hospital with a family member. When he realized that most patients only see doctors, nurses, and immediate family day after day, he thought that the hospital’s youngest patients might enjoy visits from Houston police officers. Through the Badges and Bears program, Houston officers visit patients monthly, bringing along toys and teddy bears to give to the children.

To learn more about the Houston Police Department’s community policing approach, visit the COPS Office e-newsletter, the Community Policing Dispatch. To view the winning photo, visit the COPS Office websiteTwitter, and Facebook pages. Photo courtesy of the Houston Police Department.

The COPS Office piloted the photo contest in 2015 to highlight positive community policing efforts across the country. After receiving an overwhelming number of submissions, the COPS Office made the photo contest an annual event. The 2017 contest garnered close to 200 photos during the one-month submission period. To learn more about the “Community Policing in Action” Photo Contest, visit https://www.cops.usdoj.gov/photocontest.

The COPS Office is a federal agency responsible for advancing community policing nationwide. Since 1995, the COPS Office has invested more than $14 billion to advance community policing, including grants awarded to more than 13,000 state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to fund the hiring and redeployment of approximately 129,000 officers and provide a variety of knowledge resource products including publications, training and technical assistance. For additional information about the COPS Office, please visit www.cops.usdoj.gov.