January 2015

In this issue:

Thank You Notes

HPOU, Thank you and your board for sending the beautiful floral arrangement in remembrance of my mom. It truly touched us and brought comfort to our family. Your kindness and thoughtful gesture will never be forgotten. Sincerely, Mike  Houston Police Officers Union, Thank you for the beautiful green plant with the touch of a butterfly Read More Read more

Obituatires

Leija Retired Senior Police Officer Ruben Leija, Jr. passed away on Dec. 12. He joined Police Academy Class No. 82 on June 5, 1978, and retired on Oct. 31, 2009.  He was last assigned to the Eastside Division.  During his career, he also served at the Northeast Division and Vice Division.  He is survived by Read More Read more

Psych Services: Here’s a primer on law enforcement suicide prevention

Lisa Garmezy

For police officers, suicide attempts leave no visible injuries. It’s the time when you sat up all night staring at your gun. Or you scared your wife by holding it to your head. Maybe you went up to the roof, looked around, and headed back down, or disregarded the danger on a risky call. The Read More Read more

Fallen Heroes: Solo Officer Winston Rawlins

Nelson Zoch

March 29, 1982 Winston James Rawlins was born August 1, 1958. After he attended elementary school in Shepherd, Texas, his family moved to Houston where he graduated from Saint Thomas High School in 1976. Winston attended the University of Saint Thomas for two years and followed that with one year at Sam Houston State University Read More Read more

Wheelchair Rugby a SMASH hit for second year in row

Michael Yganez

For the second year in a row HPOU board members participated in the Wheelchair Rugby SMASH tournament hosted by the Adaptive Athletics program at the University of Houston Campus Recreation and Wellness Center. The event took place on Nov. 15. Captained by HPD Assistant Chief Charlie Vasquez, HPOU fielded two teams of players consisting of Read More Read more

Eastside Christmas event a big success

On Saturday, December 20, 2014, Officer Peter Dung, Eastside Division, organized the third annual Christmas Event for the Vietnamese children living in the Park Place neighborhood. Tim Dang, Public Affairs, and Sergeant DeMartin, Eastside Division, assisted Officer Dung coordinate the event. Officer Dung thanked Mrs. Dang, Officer Wendy Recinos, Officer Susan Sanford, Officer Benjamin Silva, Read More Read more

Our ladies in blue – they first wore skirts with their badges and guns

Earl Musick (HPD Retired)

While reminiscing about my academy days in the Houston Police Department, I noticed Sandy Byers (Womack) and Susan Loucks (Richards) were wearing skirts in Class No. 34’s picture.  I then remembered that for many years skirts and heels were the required uniform for female police officers. After all this drama, they lost the suspect and Read More Read more

Latest HPOU Patrol Officer of the Month known for calm, orderly pursuit of suspects

The HPOU honored Officer James Huckabee of Northeast Patrol as Patrol Officer of the Month in its December general membership meeting. On Feb. 5, Huckabee responded to a female complainant who called in about a burglary of a residence in progress in the 9700 block of Galaxy. She said that a male had broken into Read More Read more

Jesus Aguirre named Investigator of Month

In its December general membership meeting, the HPOU named Jesus Aguirre the Investigator of the Month. Aguirre’s supervising officers provided this account about the officer’s quick thinking and his actions that resulted in his nomination for the honor. On Oct. 15, Aguirre, assigned to the Narcotics Division, acted with other members of his squad to Read More Read more

Opinion: Media and public lack understanding of the grand jury process

(EDITOR’S NOTE: The editor of the Badge & Gun had 25 years of experience with The Houston Post. He has served on three grand juries, including one as foreman. His opinions are expressed in this context and do not reflect those of the HPOU.) The Chronicle and a few others are trying to indict Texas’ Read More Read more

This year’s HPOU Scholarship topic poses changing vocational education

This year’s HPOU Scholarship topic is very thought-provoking as always. As usual, the scholarship applicants must express their opinions in a special essay entry that is required to meet a deadline set for 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 27. Entrants must be dependents of an active or retired HPOU member. And each one must be a Read More Read more

HPOU has many listeners in high (Austin) places as the Legislature begins

THE HOUSTON POLICE OFFICERS UNION appears to be in great shape, thank you, as the state capitol prepares to open the doors to the 2015 session of the Texas Legislature. While some Houston pencil pushers seek to mess with HPD’s pension program, the influential elected officials say that won’t happen. At no time like the Read More Read more

Officer safety paramount in 2015

Ray Hunt

Last month’s assassination of two of New York’s finest was a tragedy for the entire country.  It also should serve as a reminder to all of us that we can never let our guards down, especially in the current climate. The HPOU has been pushing for two-person units for several years as we believe it’s Read More Read more