Clinton National Night Out celebrates police, community relations

Share on Facebook Comments Comments Print Print
Catherine W. Idzerda
August 5, 2015

CLINTON—Clinton's National Night Out featured vehicles with sirens, snow cones and stickers.

Everything else was just gravy for the kids and families who showed up at Clinton High School on Tuesday for the annual event that allows residents to interact with police in a positive setting.

The Rock County Sheriff's Office has organized a Rock County National Night Out for the last eight years, moving it from community to community, said Sgt. Troy Eggers.

Last year's event was in Evansville. It's also been held in the town of Beloit and in Milton.

“We want to bring the community out so they get a chance to see law enforcement in a positive light,” Eggers said.

That sentiment was repeated by other officials.

Clinton Police Chief Dave Hooker said the event would probably bring in more people than the village's population. The high school parking lot was full of cars, and shuttles were transporting people who had parked at the middle school.

“There's a misconception about police out there,” Hooker said.

Events like this allow the public to see the human side of officers, he said.

They also allow the public to see officers in action.

Tuesday's event included demonstrations by the Rock County Sheriff's Office Emergency Response Team, the SWAT team and the K-9 team. The Clinton and the town of Turtle fire departments demonstrated how they cut open cars at accident scenes. The University Hospital's medical helicopter put in an appearance, as well.

Community groups and organizations such as the Clinton Public Library and the Rock County Health Department were also on the grounds. Kids collected stickers, temporary tattoos and free food. They also got to peek into police cars, try out a paint ball gun, and don police and fire uniforms and equipment.

Sheriff Bob Spoden said relations between Rock County residents and police were generally very good. These kinds of events just reinforce the bonds between the two.

“The officers live here; many of them grew up here,” Spoden said. “The values of the officers are the values of the community.”

Share on Facebook Comments Comments Print Print