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New police chief launches High Five Fridays

New police chief launches High Five Fridays
September 07
05:00 2017

Thompson spends first day connecting with youth

Shortly after she was named chief of the Winston-Salem Police Department, Catrina Thompson told The Chronicle one of her goals would be to cultivate the relationship between the department and local youth in the community, and she didn’t waste any time doing just that.

On her first official day on the job, Chief Thompson, and more than a dozen officers, greeted students with hugs, high fives and words of encouragement when they launched High Five Fridays at Kimberley Park Elementary School. Thompson said the initiative is just one way she plans to develop a healthy relationship with youth in the community.

Throughout the school year, she plans to make stops at other schools in the area.

“What better time to start than now,” Thompson said after welcoming students at the school last Friday morning.

“We want these children to know that we are here for them. They are the future leaders in this community, so it is important they know that they have our support.”

Thompson said she decided to kick off the initiative at Kimberley Park because of the relationship she has with Principal Amber Baker, who has been at the school since 2007. While watching her students interact with local police, Baker seemed to be just as excited as the children.

“It’s great to see the students overcome that initial apprehension. At first you can tell some of the students didn’t know how to react, but it didn’t take long for them to open up,” said Baker. “I think this initiative started by Chief Thompson will be huge in this community. I am grateful that she decided to start right her at Kimberley Park.”

Catrina Thompson was sworn in as the 15th chief of the Winston-Salem Police Department on Thursday, Aug. 31. Before being named chief, Thompson served as assistant chief. She has also served in the Patrol Division, Recruiting Unit, Training Division and the Criminal Investigations Division. Thompson has spent her entire 23-year law enforcement career in the city. As chief, Thompson will manage a department with more than 570 officers and 173 civilian positions and an annual budget of $74.5 million. 

 

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Tevin Stinson

Tevin Stinson

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