SIA, Law Enforcement Recognize Houston Police, Retailers for Reducing Crime

The Security Industry Association and the Int’l Association of Police Chiefs have bestowed the 2014 Michael Shanahan Award to the Houston Police Department and the Greater Houston Retailers Association.

ORLANDO, Fla. – The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) and the Security Industry Association (SIA) honored the Houston Police Department and the Greater Houston Retailers Association (GHRA) with the 2014 Michael Shanahan Award for Excellence in Public-Private Cooperation for reducing violent crime at convenience stores.

The Shanahan Award recognizes outstanding achievement in the development and implementation of public-private cooperation in public safety.

In 2007, robberies, aggravated assaults and murders at Houston convenience stores reached record levels. As a result, the Houston Police Department formed a Convenience Store Task Force.

The department also started an ordinance in 2008, which required all convenience stories in the city to register with the task force, at no charge, and to implement certain security measures, including installing video surveillance and alarm systems, using drop safes and working with the police to enforce trespassing laws.
Between 2007 and 2013, murders at those locations dropped by 70 percent; sexual assaults, 75 percent; robberies, 71 percent; aggravated assaults, 59 percent; burglary, 72 percent; and thefts and shoplifting, 82 percent.

“By forming a task force made up of all the community stakeholders, the Houston Police Department has forged a lasting partnership with the convenience stores in Houston based on strong, two-way communication,” the police department and GHRA stated. “Police and convenience store owners now rely on each other to make an impact on crime at convenience stores. Convenience stores are once again known as friendly neighborhood corner stores and have been made safer in Houston.”

Houston Police Chief Charles McLelland Jr. stressed the importance of teamwork while accepting the award. He credited “the partnership we have with the private sector-all of our partners in the retail association.”

“We couldn’t do this without them,” McLelland said. “This is truly community policing. As a police department, we know we can’t do it alone.”

SIA CEO Don Erickson commended the department and the association for their success.

“We are honored to have the opportunity to join with IACP in recognizing the Houston Police Department and the Greater Houston Retailers Association for their incredible achievements,” Erickson said. “They have clearly demonstrated how public-private partnerships and the smart implementation of security solutions can make a community safer and save lives.”

The award, which was presented at a reception held during the IACP Annual Conference and Exposition in Orlando, honors the late Chief Michael Shanahan, who served the University of Washington Police Department (UWPD) for 24 years before retiring in 1995. He made significant contributions to public safety not only as the UWPD chief but also as the co-chairman of the IACP’s Private Sector Liaison Committee from 1985 to 1999.

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