December 2016

In this issue:

Tops in Texas: HPD’s SWAT wins Texas competition in the Hill Country events, travels to Orlando to compete in SWAT Round-up International

Tom Kennedy

A method exists to establish which law enforcement agency has “the best” SWAT team in Texas. You hold a statewide competition on a countryside not nearly as flat as Houston. You set up eight grueling hypotheticals under the auspices of the Texas Tactical Police Officers Association. Besides keeping your cool under extreme duress, these exercises Read More Read more

HPD SWAT competitors carry on tradition by returning Texas trophy to Riojas family

Tom Kennedy

The HPD SWAT competition team followed a continuing tradition of the winning team in the annual state SWAT competition when team members returned the John A. “Rocky” Riojas Trophy to his family in San Antonio. San Antonio SWAT Officer Riojas was killed in the line of duty on the night of Feb. 2, 2001. The Read More Read more

Officer Robert Morales named Investigator of the Month

Tom Kennedy

The Houston Police Officers Union named narcotics officer Robert Morales the HPOU Investigator of the Month at the October general membership meeting. Morales, who serves on general narcotics squad No. 15, “displayed the highest level of dedication and commitment to duty while conducting several long-term investigations,” according to Narcotics Sgt. D. C. Bounds. Bounds said Read More Read more

Bettinger recognized for calm courage in ‘murderous situation,’ named HPOU’s Patrol Officer of the Month in October meeting

Tom Kennedy

Officer Eric Bettinger was working the nightshift out west when he heard three or four shots that sounded so close he thought they were coming at him through his patrol car. Bettinger saw a victim fall to the ground and three suspects run to get into three different vehicles. He instinctively ducked to avoid the Read More Read more

Union goes two extra steps in the ongoing mission of Undies for Everyone to help truly needy kids

Tom Kennedy

For the past two years the HPOU has fully and dutifully supported a Houston-based group entitled Undies for Everyone. This year the Union has gone far beyond this group’s call of duty. Undies for Everyone (UFE) collects and distributes underwear to underprivileged Houston students, using information from teachers and school nurses and distributing them by Read More Read more

Griffith: Latest Pray 4 Police march and prayer at City Hall further unites Houston community with its law enforcement

Tom Kennedy

Once again Let’s Pray Texas apparently succeeded in inspiring Houstonians to ask God to keep safe all law enforcement officers. The Houston Police Officers Union led the crusade to Houston City Hall, where Mayor Sylvester Turner joined dozens of officers, citizens and city leaders on the front steps for prayer. “One young lady walked up,” Read More Read more

The 100 Club purchasing 200 Level 4 vests for HPD officers because ‘This is what we do’ and have done for countless others since 1953

Tom Kennedy

A while back 100 Club executive director Rick Hartley was reading the Badge & Gun about the acquisition of several hundred Level 4 bullet-proof vests capable of stopping high-powered rifle rounds. The first two major contributions came from the Houston Police Foundation and the Houston Police Officers Union, resulting in the purchase of the first Read More Read more

HPOU’s informal Meet and Greet sessions enable officers to share latest investigative techniques that get the crooks

Tom Kennedy

The HPOU Meet and Greet programs are get-togethers for officers to allow them to share their latest crime-fighting information and criminal intelligence in a laid-back social atmosphere.    HPOU Board Member Kawanski Nichols, chairman of the Meet and Greet Committee, said, “The purpose is to bring officers out to share information and new ideas. We want Read More Read more

HPD History: Stories of Legendary Houston Police Officers

Earl Musick

During my career with the Houston Police Department, I had the opportunity to work with some legendary Houston police officers and on Saturday, Oct. 29, I was fortunate to share a table with some of those legendary retired officers. The Houston Police Retired Officers Association (HPROA) each year holds a reunion at Lady Bird Park Read More Read more

Fallen Heroes: Officer C. F. Thomas

Nelson Zoch

December 17, 1929 On Monday night, December 16, 1929, Motorcycle Officer C. F. “Osburn” Thomas was on duty on his motor in the business district at approximately 7:30 p.m. when he heard the clang of a fire department apparatus rushing south on Caroline Street. The trucks were going to a major fire reported at 1122 Read More Read more

Psyche Services: The ‘opioid’ problem: Too many prescriptions written for too much medicine

Lisa Garmezy

The October CIT training taught me a lot about the opioid epidemic through police eyes. I learned, for example, that the combination of Xanax, Soma and hydrocodone is prescribed so often it’s called “Houston cocktail.” Perhaps our office can return the favor, and share information on opioids from a psychological point of view. Our perspective, Read More Read more

Kelsey Seybold: Staying Healthy as You Age

Kelsey Seybold Staff

Law enforcement can put a lot of wear and tear on both the mind and body. As you age, it’s more important than ever, especially as a public servant, to do everything you can to keep yourself healthy, strong and mentally sharp. Although aging is inevitable, many later-in-life health issues can be prevented before they Read More Read more

Foods to boost brain and heart health

Kelsey Seybold Staff

Having trouble coming up with healthy meal ideas? Here are some go-to ingredients: Fish Lean protein Red wine (one glass) Vegetables like greens, kale, broccoli, cauliflower and tomatoes Nuts Whole grains like whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread or brown rice Blueberries   Read more

Obituaries of HPD Family Members

Tom Kennedy

ALANIZ Eulalia Gonzalez Alaniz passed away on Thursday, October 20, 2016.  She is the mother of Senior Police Officer Ismael Rodriguez, assigned to the Air Support Division. Services were held October 21 with burial in Monterrey, Mexico. ALLBRITTON Retired Police Officer Alvin L. Allbritton passed away on Monday, September 19, 2016. He was a veteran Read More Read more

Thank You Notes to HPOU

Tom Kennedy

Houston Police Officers Union, Thank you so much for the lovely flower arrangement you sent to my dad’s funeral services. He loved the Houston Police Department. Your show of support was overwhelming. Thank you. Sincerely, Bonnie The Family of Wilfred Navarro  HPOU, The family of Edward Holiday acknowledges with deep appreciation your kind expression of Read More Read more