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DARE Fun Day
Students get first-experience
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A fifth-grade student from the Jefferson Elementary School has fun checking out the back seat of a Great Bend Police Department patrol vehicle Friday during DARE Fun Day, sponsored by the Drug Abuse and Resistance Program. - photo by Russell Edem

The Great Bend Police Department visited Jefferson Elementary School on Friday for DARE Fun Day. All fifth graders take the Drug Abuse and Resistance Education class.

“We are here at Jefferson Elementary giving demonstrations on our police dog Lazer and also letting the children climb inside our vehicles for a first-hand look at them and how they function,” DARE Officer Paul Millard said. “We just wanted to have a fun DARE class event today.”

The children had the opportunity to climb inside the DARE police truck along with a patrol vehicle. They got to see how the lights and sirens are turned on. They also learned just how small the back of a patrol car is, and the reason behind that. Officers don’t want a person they have arrested to be too comfortable and able to move around, Millard said. That is for the safety of the officer inside the vehicle.

“These seats are hard by design,” Millard added. “We do not want people hiding things within the seats like drugs, weapons and other illegal items as we arrest them. This is also for the safety of the officers inside the vehicle.”

The second demonstration was on police dogs and how they are used at the police department. It featured GBPD K-9 officer Lazer, a German Shepherd who joined the force in 2015. He is used primarily for detecting illegal drugs, but can also be used various other duties, such as tracking and apprehending suspects.

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Jefferson School fifth graders check out a police vehicle during DARE Fun Day. - photo by Russell Edem