PRESS RELEASES

Monday December 8, 2014:

Citizen's Police Academy

The Oak Ridge Police Department is pleased to announce the opening for applications for the Citizens Police Academy, which will begin on January 15, 2015 and run through March 19, 2015.  The Citizens Police Academy allows citizens to gain knowledge of how the Oak Ridge Police Department is organized and its functions, as well as improved understanding of the challenges in serving and protecting the community.  It requires a ten-week commitment from the participants and will be held one night a week, on Thursdays beginning at 6:00 PM and ending at 9:00 PM.  The goal of the Citizen’s Police Academy is to create and develop a nucleus of responsible and well-informed citizens who have an enhanced understanding of the Police Department and how it serves the City of Oak Ridge.

The Citizens Police Academy consists of classroom and hands-on instructional learning experiences.  Subjects covered include:  law review, the job of a uniformed police officer, investigations, crime scene investigations, crime prevention, canine program, tactical operations, crime analysis, and much more.  Participants will be involved in activities such as touring the communications facilities and police department, using police equipment, canine demonstration, and firing department service weapons.

Graduates of the Citizens Police Academy may be called upon to provide input and information to their neighborhoods or work environments, increasing citizen involvement on issues of mutual concern.  The program improves the commitment of the Oak Ridge Police Department to partner with citizens to build lasting and productive partnerships between the Oak Ridge Police Department and the community they serve. 

The Citizen’s Police Academy is free of charge.  Each applicant must fill out an application and undergo a criminal background investigation prior to approval and admission.  Applicants must be at least 21 years of age and preference will be given to those who live or work in the City of Oak Ridge.  The instructional course will be held in the 2nd floor amphitheater of the Oak Ridge High School, 1450 Oak Ridge Turnpike.  Anyone wishing to apply for the Citizen’s Police Academy may do so by visiting www.OakRidgeTN.gov  or stopping by Police Records at the Municipal Building, 200 S Tulane Avenue for an application.  Class size is limited to 15, to allow for maximum instructor-student interaction.  Questions regarding the Citizen’s Police Academy can be directed to Community Resource Officer Brandan Sharp at 865-556-6696 or email bsharp@OakRidgeTN.gov

Click here to download the Citizen's Police Academy Applications.
Click here to download the Release of Liability for CPA.




Tuesday September 23, 2014:

Saturday, October 11, 2014
3:00 - 7:00 pm
A.K. Bissell Park

The Oak Ridge Police Department (ORPD) and the Oak Ridge Neighborhood Watch Program (ORNWP) ask for your support of the 2014 National Night Out celebration on Saturday, October 11. The event will be held from 3:00 to 7:00 pm at A.K. Bissell Park outside the Oak Ridge Civic Center.
National Night Out is a crime prevention program promoted by National Association of Town Watch. This year marks the 31st anniversary of this important community/police partnership. National Night Out is designed to:
National Night Out will include family-friendly activities for adults and children of all ages. This fun and educational event will offer music, games, K9 demonstrations, food, and drinks to the public at no cost.
Heighten crime prevention and substance abuse prevention awareness
Generate support for local crime prevention programs
Strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships
Send a message of our strong commitment to prevent crime.

There are several ways to participate.

1) Oak Ridge churches are invited to host games for children and/or to bring baked goods for attendees. If your church would like to participate, contact Joan Cassens at 118jjcassens@gmail.com.

2) Companies are invited to sponsor National Night Out with financial contributions or by providing gifts of food and supplies for the event. Contact Emilee Smith (emilee.smith.etn@gmail.com) to make a donation.

3) Community organizations and companies are encouraged to provide food and other give-away items while they exhibit their services at the event. Contact Emilee Smith (emilee.smith.etn@gmail.com) to register your organization.

4) Oak Ridge Neighborhood Watch Program members are needed to make this celebration a great event for our community. Our efforts will be supported by ORPD, Volunteers in Police Services (VIPS), alumni of the Citizens Police Academy (CPA), and graduates of the Junior Police Academy (JPA). There are many ways you can help, so contact Emilee Smith (emilee.smith.etn@gmail.com) to join the fun.

5) Bring your family and friends!, and have fun! See you there!




Tuesday June 24, 2014:

On Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at approximately 1:40 A.M., Oak Ridge Police (ORPD) officers were dispatched to the Rocky Top Convenience Store at 1190 Oak Ridge Turnpike to investigate a suspicious black sedan in the parking lot, occupied by one male black subject and one female black subject.  Both were reportedly intoxicated and had been involved in a verbal disturbance earlier after exiting the store.  Two ORPD officers responded and made contact with both subjects, identified as Sherrius Smith, 20 YOA, of 1141 Viking Rd., Knoxville and a juvenile female, 17 YOA.  Mr. Smith then physically resisted one officer and during the struggle both entered the front driver’s side door of the sedan.  Mr. Smith then placed the vehicle into drive and accelerated towards the store.  The vehicle was prevented from striking the building when the officer who was attempting to control Mr. Smith managed to turn the wheel, directing the vehicle away from the building.  The vehicle struck a steel post in the parking lot, disabling it, and Mr. Smith fled the scene on foot.  Additional officers responded and are currently searching for Mr. Smith and the juvenile female, who also left the scene.  Multiple charges are pending against Mr. Smith and the investigation remains ongoing; no further information will be released at this time.




Monday June 23, 2014:

On Monday, June 23, 2014 at approximately 7:40 P.M., Oak Ridge Police (ORPD) officers were dispatched to a disturbance between multiple subjects in the parking lot of an apartment building at 105 Wakefield Rd., during which a male suspect allegedly discharged one round from a pistol.  Prior to the arrival of officers, witnesses reported the suspect entered apartment #E and was in possession of a second firearm.  Officers arrived on scene and established a perimeter around the apartment building.  An ORPD Crisis Intervention Team-trained negotiator then established contact with the suspect, as ORPD tactical personnel responded to the scene.  At approximately 8:40 P.M., the suspect, identified as Abacuc Vazquez, 52 YOA, of 105 Wakefield Rd., Apartment #E surrendered to officers and was taken into custody without incident.  Two semiautomatic pistols were seized at the scene, and a second subject, Megan Loy, 28 YOA, of 105 Wakefield Rd., Apartment #E was subsequently arrested.  Both subjects were transported to the Anderson County Detention Center, where Mr. Vazquez was charges with six counts of aggravated assault and one count of reckless endangerment and Ms. Loy was charged with tampering with evidence.  The investigation remains ongoing; no further information will be released at this time.






Thursday June 19, 2014:

The Oak Ridge Police will be conducting focused traffic enforcement (Operation Drive Safe) on the Oak Ridge Turnpike and Illinois Ave from June 18, 2014 through Labor Day weekend.  The Oak Ridge Police will be looking for motorists that are speeding, texting while driving, driving while impaired, and committing other traffic related violations. Officers will also be looking for drivers who do not yield to pedestrians within a crosswalk.  The Oak Ridge Police Department wants everyone to have a safe summer and share the road whether it’s with another vehicle, cyclist, or pedestrian.



Friday June 13, 2014:

Tree Cutting and Removal Scam:

During this time of year we typically receive numerous calls in regards to fraud and theft committed under the guise of trimming trees and shrubbery. With the storm system that came through on June 10th, it is anticipated that we will increase in this type of fraud. Already we have had complaints by citizens who have been duped out of their funds after they agreed to have storm debris cleaned up.

The scam entails individuals driving around neighborhoods looking for trees and shrubs in need of trimming. The individual will make contact with the homeowner and offer to trim the trees and remove the debris for a set fee. After a price is agreed upon, typically several hundred dollars, the individuals will begin to do the agreed upon work. After cutting down trees, the subjects will leave as if to get lunch or to get additional equipment only to never return. The citizens are left with a half completed job and a large mess in addition to the loss of their money.

Residents are cautioned to only deal with reputable individuals who they have actually solicited as opposed to a walk-up solicitation. If hiring an individual, one should ask for ID and a valid phone number at the very least. Additionally, money should be exchanged only after the job is completed.   Lastly, a reliable/reputable individual is typically well equipped for the job and arrives in an appropriate vehicle. If in doubt, citizens are welcomed to contact the police department to have individuals checked out.

By making our citizens aware of scams, we can greatly reduce their losses and reduce crime in our area.