Missouri City reached a momentous milestone recently as citizens, business owners, dignitaries and police officers welcomed the first Police Department Mini-Station to the community.
Celebrating the grand opening with a ribbon cutting, City leaders officially opened the doors of the center at 1703-A Texas Parkway on Saturday, Aug. 4 at 10 a.m. About 50 residents attended the ceremony to salute the center, visit with officers and enjoy refreshments.
Citizens can expect a consistent police presence at the facility as all patrol officers assigned to the Northern section of the City will maintain visibility in their patrol district as they report on- and off-duty from the Mini-Station. As personnel become available, the station will be available for walk-in visits on a 24-hour timeframe.
While the center is open, citizens can share community concerns with police officers, file complaints, and receive handouts on the City’s proactive policing projects, including the Crime Watch and House Watch programs.
At the grand opening, officials who spoke to the audience that warm Saturday morning acknowledged the importance of the center to the Texas Parkway-Cartwright Road Corridor. They joined Mayor Allen Owen in championing the City for strategizing a new community outreach initiative:
“This new center is so important. I believe in the concept of having these mini-stations throughout the community, so police officers can get to know people and the people can get to know them.”- Congressman Al Green, who presented Mayor Owen with a proclamation and a flag that has flown over the Capitol in Washington, D.C.
“We should be proud of this accomplishment.”-Loveless Mitchell, Fort Bend Deputy District Director for State Sen. Rodney Ellis, who presented Mayor Owen a proclamation from Ellis’ office
“We have one of the safest and diverse cities in the United States and I’ve heard from my constituents how excited they are about this mini-station.”-State Rep. Ron Reynolds, who noted that a flag that has been flown over the State Capitol in Austin will be arriving at the Mini-Station next week to honor the grand opening
"Councilmember Don Smith (District B) and I have talked about putting this in for years. Businesses that are coming in on the north end of town are very appreciative of the police presence here.”->Councilmember Bobby Marshall (District A), who represents the area the center is located in. Councilmember Smith, who was unable to attend the ceremony, has been a strong supporter of the initiative for years.
“The need to make sure that people understand the Police Department is embedded in the community and we are stakeholders just like everyone else here and we walk hand-in-hand with every neighborhood in Missouri City.”-Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald, who also recognized the commitment of the Police Department and presented plaques to the Police and Fire Auxiliary for helping with funding, Alaniz Painting for donating the paint and Dixie Carpet for donating the carpet. Plaques recognizing their contributions are displayed on a wall inside the mini-station.
Also participating in the ceremony and emphasizing the important partnership between police officers and people who live and work in the community, were Mayor Pro Tem Jerry Wyatt, Council Members Danny Nguyen and Floyd Emery, Doc Holliday, Community Liaison for Congressman Al Green, Assistant Police Chief Mike Berezin and many members of the nationally-recognized Police Department.
Business owners and residents were also delighted about the development.
“I’ve already seen an increase in business,” said Walter Cockerham, owner of the adjacent Walter’s Barber Shop, proudly announcing that Councilmember Smith is among his clientele. “I think it will be great for all the business owners in this area.”
The manager of next-door neighbor Shipley Donuts agreed. “It means a great deal to have this in the community,” said Janice Edwards, who also owns Greatest Bar-B-Q on Texas Parkway and lives in Hunters Glen III. “I’m excited, it was talked about for so long.”
Gene Rasbury, director of the Crime Watch program in Hunters Glen I and II, is also thankful. “I’m all for it!” he declared. “It’s going to help a lot with people out on patrol who can call in suspicious activity, and will cut down on response time. I hope for more to open around the City.”
And, 38-year resident Annette Mitchell also sang the praises of the new station, exclaiming: “I think it’s really great!”
For updates on the project, please monitor the website, www.missouricitytx.gov, watch Missouri City Television (Ch. 16 on Comcast and Ch. 99 on AT&T U-verse) and follow us @MissouriCityTX on Twitter.