Williams appointed school resource officer

Published 10:20 pm Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Demopolis Police Sgt. Tim Williams has been named the first-ever school resource officer for Demopolis City Schools. Beginning Monday, March 2, Williams will be an integral part of the daily life at the schools as the Demopolis Police Department’s representative.

“It’s not so much about the security aspect; it’s more about mentoring,” Williams said. “I’m extremely excited about the opportunity to get the program off the ground. I’ll be going back and forth among the schools, gearing more towards the high school and the middle school. I’ll be trying to get some programs for all of the schools.”

“I noticed other schools that had this program,” said DPD chief Tommie Reese. “Demopolis has never had one, and when I got the appointment as chief, I wanted to do that.

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“I think Sgt. Williams will do a great job. He has an excellent personality, he knows the community, and he knows the kids. He’s a parent already and has children in the school system. This will give the kids the opportunity to see law enforcement in a different light. He’s not just a person who handcuffs people; he’s an ear who can listen to your problems.”

School administrators who have worked in larger cities, like superintendent Dr. L. Wayne Vickers and Demopolis Middle School principal Clarence Jackson, know that it will be a huge advantage to have a police officer in the Demopolis schools.

“As a former principal in Tuscaloosa County, I know the great possibilities that we have with a school resource officer,” Vickers said. “The day after Chief Reese was sworn into office, he approached me about this and the opportunity of going ahead and putting one of the officers in our schools.”

“I am elated,” Jackson said. “I spent 10 years in Birmingham, and it was the best thing to ever happen to Ramsay and Woodlawn, the schools where I worked. That person became like a staff member. A lot of problems were curtailed just because of the presence (of an officer).”

During Spring Break week, Williams will attend a school resource officers’ training school at Spain Park High School in Hoover.

“Sgt. Williams will work with the administration, being in the hallways, the lunchroom and the parking lots,” Vickers said. “He will be doing a lot of preventative measures. He will also help us coordinate events, and will be in attendance at our extracurricular activities.

“What I appreciate about Chief Reese is that he wanted to do something right now. I think this will be a positive. Sgt. Williams is very knowledgeable about our school system and the parents here, so I feel like we’ve hit a home run with this.”