Cleveland State Transitions From Campus Security To Campus Police

Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Dr. Tommy Wright, vice president for Finance and Administration; Dr. Carl Hite, CSCC president and Mike Hodges, chief of Campus Police, stand in front of one of CSCC’s newly designed campus police cars.
Dr. Tommy Wright, vice president for Finance and Administration; Dr. Carl Hite, CSCC president and Mike Hodges, chief of Campus Police, stand in front of one of CSCC’s newly designed campus police cars.
In an effort to provide added security measures at Cleveland State, the college has recently transitioned from Campus Security to Campus Police. 

Mike Hodges, chief of Campus Police, said, “When I interviewed, they told me the intention was to move from an unarmed security to a full-fledged full-time POST (Police Officer Standard Training) Certified Police Department.”  

Mr. Hodges said the biggest motivator behind the change was violence across the country on school campuses. “Violence is growing every day, and the thought process was to make our campus more secure—to be a deterrent to any kind of armed shooter or threat, or criminals in general. We want to keep that element away from the campus.” 

Dr. Tommy Wright, vice president for Finance and Administration, said, “When you look across the country at the different institutions, while we have been blessed to not have any type of violent crime here, we can’t ignore the fact that it could happen, and we didn’t really feel prepared since we weren’t armed in any way. The first step was training our Campus Security to carry Tasers. When Mike came on board, with him being a POST Certified Police Officer, we were immediately able to take that to a whole new level and convert from Security to Police and carry guns.

“Mike has been instrumental in leading this transition. His knowledge of law enforcement made it a smooth transition. In addition, our Police Academy, Director Dwight Williams and Assistant Director Jarred Crawford, have also been instrumental in helping with this process.”  

Dr. Wright said, “One of the other things we decided was to move our Campus Police Department to a more centralized location.” Campus Security used to be across the street from the campus, but it is now located in the George L. Mathis Student Center.  

“We had a lot of help along the way,” said Mr. Hodges. “Chief Wes Snyder and Captain Dave Bishop with the Cleveland Police Department along with various members of the Bradley County Sheriff’s Department and 911 Center, as well as Bradley County Emergency Management, have been extremely helpful to us during this process.” 

Mr. Hodges said it took about eight months to make this transition happen. “We had to write a letter to the Tennessee POST Commission letting them know of our intention to become a police department because POST regulates all police activity in the state of Tennessee; that was the first step. At that point, we had to start the process getting our proper equipment, developing a different standard operating procedure, as well as a whole new set of documents.” 

Mr. Hodges said they have hired additional police officers and as other positions become available, they will replace some of those positions with police officers, as well. 

“We have relatively few crimes on our campus,” said Mr. Hodges. “This is a preventive act. Not only for those wanting to do harm or trying to commit a crime, but we will also be a quicker response force because we are right here on campus. 

“We want to continue to ensure that Cleveland State has a safe campus. We want our faculty, staff and students to come here to school and concentrate on being students or employees and still have peace of mind that their well-being is taken care of.” 

Mr. Hodges is a graduate of Maryville College where he received his Bachelor of Arts in History and the Knoxville Police Department Police Academy where he received his P.O.S.T. Certification. He brings 14 years of experience in patrol tactics, traffic accident investigation, preliminary investigations of both property crimes and crimes against persons and crime scene investigation. He is also a field training officer and departmental instructor in numerous areas. 

For more information on the CSCC Campus Police Department, contact Hodges at 423 473-2331.


East Ridge High School Hosts Heritage Day Celebration

East Ridge High School (ERHS) presented a school-wide project, “Honoring Our Heritage” on Friday.   East Ridge High School has a diverse student population, with 20 foreign countries represented. Organizers said, " Because some of our students came to ERHS from a foreign country unable to speak English, we wanted to create a project to solidify us as a student body.  ... (click for more)

Lee University Announces Summer Camp Opportunities

Lee University is home to a wide variety of summer camps hosted by Lee personnel in which community youth can participate.  Each Lee camp is handled separately by individual directors. Specific information for each camp is found below. Registration deadlines vary, but some are quickly approaching. Please contact camp organizers for specific information about camp costs and ... (click for more)

State Attorney General Says City Council Cannot Make Taxis Not Registered In Hamilton County Go Through Emissions Testing

The state attorney general's office has ruled that the City Council cannot require that taxis not registered in Hamilton County go through emissions testing. The city is dealing with the new Uber taxi service that has an out-of-town owner. Locally-owned cabs have to go through the annual emissions testing. The opinion says that local taxi owners cannot get around the emissions ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Area Bracing For Possibility Of Isolated Severe Storms, Tornadoes Not Ruled Out

The National Weather Service is feeling uncertain about today's weather pattern and has not ruled out the possibility of isolated, severe thunderstorms or an isolated tornado in our area. The greatest threat seems to be between 4 and 7 p.m. this evening. Below is the latest update: HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK...UPDATED NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN 127 PM EDT SAT ... (click for more)

The Heart Of A Teacher Makes A Difference - And Response (2)

In less than four weeks, I expect to be one of 216 graduating seniors from East Hamilton School. One could say all possible variables help a student rise to the highest levels in school; but a student is more than his environment or genetic code. He is a mixture of his own propensity and dedication to academics, coupled with a systemic team of mentors who give their all as a student’s ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: FBI To Study ‘Lickers’

About 25 years ago there was a terrifying movie called “The Silence of the Lambs.” It was so good it won the Academy Awards in all five categories – Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Adapted Screenplay. Further, Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster were brilliant, but do you remember the third “star?” Scott Glenn played a character named “Jack Crawford,” the ... (click for more)