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.


Robinson’s Science Camp Finishes 10th Year

Rocket City Science Camp at Lee University has celebrated its 10th year. Since 2005, more than 1,200 students have participated in one of two science camps led by Lee’s Dr. Jason Robinson.  “It's hard to believe how quickly 10 years have passed since the camps first began at Lee,” said Dr. Robinson. “Our family, camp leaders, and the entire Lee community have been honored ... (click for more)

‘Dalton State Of Mind’ Concert Scheduled For Sept. 21

The "Dalton State of Mind" concert, featuring several music groups from around North Georgia, is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m. on the Burran Bell Tower quad in the heart of the Dalton State Campus. It is free and open to the public. Concert goers are invited to bring blankets and lawn chairs. In case of inclement weather, the concert will be moved to Bandy Gym.  ... (click for more)

Developer Says CARTA To Lease 75 Parking Spaces At Renaissance Park Lot For New $14 Million Apartments

A member of the Vision Hospitality Group said Tuesday that CARTA plans to lease 75 spaces at the public parking lot by Renaissance Park for its planned $14 million apartment complex. Drew Hibbard, vice president of finance and investments, told members of the North Chattanooga Council of the Chamber of Commerce that it will be under a 50-year lease with the transit group that ... (click for more)

Muslim Civil Rights Advocacy Group Calls For Protection Of Muslims In Tennessee In Light Of Statements By Sheriff Hammond

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, on Tuesday called on public officials "to act to protect the civil rights of Tennessee’s Muslim community following anti-Islam remarks" by Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond. Sheriff Hammond told members of the Hamilton County Pachyderm Club on Monday that he ... (click for more)

Sheriff Hammond Is Right On The Muslim Threat - And Response

Sheriff Hammond is exactly correct on the Muslims in Tennessee.  He sees with clear eyes the problem with the Muslims in our state and country.  They do want to take over Tennessee.  Our politicians are selling us down the river and allowing the trouble makers to dig in like tics and suck out the life's blood of our Constitution and take us over.  They ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My September Garden

As we begin the annual pilgrimage into fall, I walk through my garden and, in the spirit of Orchids and Onions, I see colorful mums starting to flower at the same time dried-up weeds are begging to be pulled. So as we turn the calendar to September, here are some things that catch my eye: A COLORFUL MUM to Chattanooga State for unveiling the Michael Hennen Hospitality Center in ... (click for more)