Message from Detective Soika:
This past weekend while working the annual City of Kent Heritage Fest at the Metro SWAT display I was reminded of a young man I had the pleasure of meeting the previous year. This young man was bright, articulate, funny, and full of life and a pleasure to be around. His name is Ashton "AJ" Nicholson. This year I was unable to visit with AJ because on March 12, 2014, he was accidentally shot and subsequently passed away. This year I was reminded about AJ after receiving a card from his father. "The AJ WAY" card describes how AJ lived his life and provided a place for friends and family to view and share stories about AJ. Please visit TheAJWay.org.
I have been a police officer with the City of Kent for 15 years and a member of Metro SWAT for 12 years. I realize the importance of gun safety. The accident that took AJ's life may have possibly been prevented with some basic firearm safety and responsibility. The encounter with AJ's father motivated me to promote a program in which the City of Kent Police Department participates.
The program is called Project Child Safe. Information about the program can be found at www.projectchildsafe.org. Each year at the Heritage Fest Kent Police distributes free gun locks and brochures as part of the program. However, I would like to make the locks and information on gun safety available to anyone that needs one throughout the entire year. Keep in mind supply is somewhat limited, so please only request a lock if you truly need to lock a firearm in your home. Everyone likes "free" but they do not work well as bike locks and they won't keep the kids out of the cookie jar. In addition, resale is prohibited.
Please remember during the summer months children inevitably have additional freedoms around the home or homes they visit. Please, if you own a firearm, remember these basic rules.
- Keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
- Keep your finger off the trigger.
- Treat every gun as if it were loaded.
- Keep firearms unloaded when not in use.
- Store ammunition separately from firearms.
- Keep your firearms secure.
Please contact Detective Soika #224 at the Kent Police Department for a free gunlock and information about your responsibility as a firearms owner.
Have a safe and enjoyable summer!
07-10-2014Yesterday, the Portage County Drug Task Force arrested and booked Robert Baker of 1176 Delaware Trail in Streetsboro for Illegal Cultivation of Marijuana and Tampering with Evidence, both felonies of the 3rd degree.
07-08-2014On April 22, 2014, Benny Lee Freeman pled guilty in Federal Court to being a felon in possession of firearms and possession with intent to distribute marijuana. Today, he was sentenced to 115 months in federal prison, three years of supervised release and $200.00 in special assessments for cost.
New Crime Stoppers Item
06-09-2014 Click here for photos of the subject.
04-07-2014Luke Nelson was sworn in as a Kent police officer on Monday, April 7, 2014. He is a graduate of the University of Akron and is currently working on his Master's Degree. We welcome Officer Nelson to the department!
Party Registration Program
03-27-2014New for 2014, is the Party Registration Program, a cooperative effort between the City of Kent and the Kent Police Department to provide party hosts and attendees with the opportunity to receive a telephone warning in the case of excessive noise or other nuisance activities.
While it does not guarantee that a summons will not be issued, KPD WILL use reasonable efforts to contact the party registrant and provide them with a warning, when appropriate. As always, party hosts and attendees are responsible for complying with all federal, state and local laws.
If you plan on hosting a party this Spring, or at anytime throughout the year, please review the following files for more information on the new program, as well as the registration form. You must have Adobe® Reader to view these files.
- Overview of the Party Registration Program
- Party Registration Rules
- Common Violations
- Party Registration Form
Have you seen these people?
03-26-2014Anyone with information on the identity of the subjects in the following photos is being asked to contact the Kent Police Department at 330.673.7732.
03-26-2014Karen Starcher was reported as a missing person on September 13, 2013. She had been missing for 8 days before she resurfaced in Windham, OH. She was taken to the hospital and then to Ravenna PD, where she was interviewed by a detective. She was referred to the Kent PD after telling the Ravenna Detective that she had been abducted from the Zephyr Bar in Kent.
Several months and many investigative man hours (from 3 law enforcement jurisdictions and Robinson Memorial Hospital) were exhausted, after Starcher's alleged sexual assault by her captors.
Charges of Falsification were eventually filed by the Kent PD, after it was found that Karen made up the story to cover for her exploits away from her child and family. A warrant was issued for her arrest and she was eventually arrested on the charge.
On March 24, 2014, she pled guilty to the charge of Falsification. She received a $150.00 fine and a 30 day jail sentence. She received credit for the 3 days served after her arrest and 27 days of the remaining jail sentence was suspended by the Kent Municipal Court.
KPD Receives Grant
02-21-2014Kent Police have been awarded a Justice Assistance Grant to provide additional patrols in the downtown area this spring and summer. The $6750 award will be used to fund officers performing dedicated bicycle and foot patrols in downtown Kent.
Chief Michelle Lee is pleased to be able to provide additional officer presence in the downtown area. “As the downtown redevelopment progressed, we projected that we will start seeing increased calls for service there. We want to be proactive in making sure downtown remains a safe destination for our residents and the many new visitors now coming to Kent.”
Kent Police partnered with the Chamber of Commerce and Main Street Kent to plan the project. “We wanted to make sure our ideas would serve the needs of the downtown business community and help to keep all the positive momentum downtown going,” Chief Lee said. “Downtown is tailor-made for bike patrols. Officers working on bike have better opportunities to work with business owners to identify potential problems early, and come up with solutions before they can grow. The officers will certainly enforce the law downtown, particularly in the evening hours, but the goal is to establish relationships with the business community that will help to reduce our calls there.”
Kent PD has fifteen officers specially trained to patrol on bike and a fleet of five police mountain bikes. Other officers will work foot patrols in the area. They will begin the additional patrols as soon as the weather breaks this spring when pedestrian traffic downtown picks up.
The Justice Assistance Grant is an annual, competitive grant administered by the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services. This project marks the first time Kent Police have received the JAG-LE award.
02-21-2014The department is pleased to announce three new officers have been hired. These officers will replace personnel that retired last year.
Lindsey Llewellyn is a graduate of the KSU Police Academy and has worked as a deputy with the Portage County Sheriff's Office, working in their jail.
Michael Carnahan is also a graduate of the KSU Police Academy and has worked as both a corrections officer at the Trumbull County Jail and a part-time officer with Hubbard PD.
Matthew Brooks served as a marine for eight years and a member of the Ohio Army National Guard for four years. He received his OPOTA certification from the University of Akron Police Academy and had been employed part-time by Springfield PD.
All three officers were sworn in and began their training this week. Congratulations!
|(L-R) Chief Lee, Officer Llewellyn, Officer Carnahan & Officer Brooks|
2013 Annual Report
Citizens Police Academy
2-12-2014The Kent Police Department will once again be offering a Citizens Police Academy to begin on Thursday, February 20, 2014.
1-27-2014 January 24th was Rosemarie Mosher's last day with us after 34 years of service. Hired in 1979, she quickly made an impact within the department as evidenced by her promotion to Dispatch Coordinator from 1982 to 1985. Throughout the years, Rosemarie took on many additional responsibilities such as the monthly/annual reports, training new dispatchers, coordinating Halloween communications and creating the department website. She educated herself in computers to keep us updated in the latest technology, parking ticket system and CAD/RMS. She received employee of the year awards in 2002 and 2006 and has received numerous commendations over the years. She has also been our most senior dispatch coordinator, serving in that capacity since 2001. Thank you, Rosemarie, for all your years of service, and for keeping cops and firefighters safe! You will be missed! We wish you well in your retirement.
1-22-2014 The Kent Police Department conducted an investigation of multiple vehicles that were damaged at Don Joseph Toyota on 12-28-13. During the investigation, information was obtained that identified three suspects as being responsible for the damage. All three suspects are juveniles and have been charged with Vandalism.
12-18-2013 Thank you everyone who came out to our Fill–a–Cruiser event. With your help, KPCA was able to assist 24 families, which included 55 children. We don't have pictures of the actual event, due to the blizzard that was occurring, but we do have photos of the gifts. Thank you and Merry Christmas!
11-14-2013 As I’m sure you have heard, a devastating typhoon struck the Philippines last weekend. Millions of people around the world are pledging donations and any other type of support. Please take a moment to read the press release below. There are many people out there who are looking to take those donations for themselves and not the victims.
Attorney General DeWine Urges Caution for Responding to Typhoon Relief Requests
(COLUMBUS, Ohio)—Following the devastating typhoon in the Philippines, Attorney General Mike DeWine is urging Ohioans to be cautious when responding to requests for donations to help those in harm’s way.
"In the wake of this disaster, we want to do all we can to help, and I encourage those who can to do so," Attorney General DeWine. "But please remember that while legitimate charities make good use of your donations, others may use this tragedy to take your money for themselves, not for those in need."
Charitable donors can protect themselves by following these tips:
- Research before you contribute. Visit Attorney General Website Website to determine if an organization is registered in Ohio and to find additional good-giving resources.
- Donate to well-known, established charities. Be wary of copycat charities or those with names similar to legitimate charities.
- Be wary of unsolicited calls or emails asking for donations. Do not give your credit card or banking information over the phone, and do not click on links or attachments in unsolicited emails.
- Do not make checks payable to an individual. Specify the purpose of your donation in writing, when possible.
- Do not be pressured to give. High-pressure tactics may signal a scam.
When a charitable organization calls you seeking a donation, the caller must provide the name of the organization and the location of its principal place of business. Professional solicitors calling on behalf of an organization also must provide this basic information about the charity, in addition to disclosing the name of the professional solicitor and the fact that the solicitation is being conducted by the caller as a professional solicitor.
Those who suspect charitable fraud should contact the Ohio Attorney General's Office at 800-282-0515 or Attorney General Website Website
10-28-2013 The Kent Police Department is investigating three armed robberies that occurred in a span of an hour in different parts of the city on Sunday 10-27-13 at the conclusion of the unofficial Halloween celebration. The suspects approached victims while brandishing firearms and demanded valuables. The suspects were stopped in a vehicle shortly after the last robbery. Three suspects were arrested and charged with Aggravated Robbery and Complicity to Aggravated Robbery. Two of the victims sustained minor injuries during the robberies. Photos of the suspects will not be released at this time due to the ongoing investigation.
- Gary L Bacchus Jr., 19 yrs. of age, from Cleveland Hts., Ohio was charged with 2 counts of Aggravated Robbery.
- Michael Mccollins, 21 yrs. of age, from Cleveland, Ohio was charged with 2 counts of Aggravated Robbery.
- Christopher B Mason Jr., 19 yrs. of age, from Euclid, Ohio was charged with 2 counts of Complicity to Aggravated Robbery.
10-27-2013 UPDATE The total number of arrests has been updated. It was a relatively quiet Halloween in Kent this year. The Halloween Statistics are now available. Click here Halloween 2013 for the file.
10-22-2013 The Portage County Board of Commissioners and their Emergency Management Advisory Council are pleased to announce the launch of Portage Prepares. Portage Prepares is a new locally-based online, social media and print education program led by the Portage County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
Portage Prepares provides local resources for information on how to respond in emergencies.
- County-wide education program
- Information to meet the challenges of disasters and emergencies in order to be safe, reduce injury and reduce property destruction.
- Find helpful links with more information about preparedness.
- Check back every month for new articles.
10-21-2013 The Kent Police Department is investigating an armed robbery that occurred in the 100 block of N. Water St. on Sunday 10-13-13 at 6:50 PM. The suspect approached the elderly victim as he was making a transaction at an ATM and demanded money. The suspect was armed with a handgun. The suspect obtained an undisclosed amount of money and fled on foot northbound on N. Water St. The suspect put a halloween type mask on his face during the robbery.
The suspect is describes as a Hispanic or ligh skinned black male. He was approximately 5 ft. 10 in. with a thin builc. He was wearing a light colored jacket with a blck hoodie, black pants, red hat and black tennis shoes.
Anyone with information on the identity of the suspect or may have seen the suspect on the day of the robbery is being asked to contact the Kent Police Department 330.673.7732 or leave a tip by clicking here.
10-21-2013 The Kent Police Department is investigating a reported burglary that occured early Monday morning. On 10-21-13 just after midnight, officers responded to a report of a burglary at the College Towers Apartment complex. Two suspects reportedly assaulted the resident, stole several items and fled on foot. No weapons were seen.
The suspects were described as two black males, both in their early 20's, both wearing dark clothing. One suspect had on a light colored t-shirt under the dark sweatshirt.
Apparently, rumors of a shooting in that area have spread quickly via electronic media. The Kent Police Department has not responded to any incidents of that nature today.
Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call the Kent Police Department at 330.673.7732
10-15-2013 The Kent Police Department is investigating a shooting that occured on Monday, 10-14-2013 at 8:44 AM. The shooting occured in the wooded area north of Howe Rd, between Sunnybrook and Mogadore Rds. One male subject was taken to an area hospital for treatment. Kent Police Department was assited by Brimfield and Stow police departments. There is no indication that a gunman remains in the area, and there is no danger to the public.
Anyone with information regarding the incident is asked to call the Kent Police Department at 330.673.7732
Tour the Police Department
10-8-2013 The police department will be conducting tours of the police station from 5 PM to 7 PM on October 15th. Children are welcome. We will have vehicles on display, and officers on hand to speak with. There will be a Town Hall meeting at 7 PM in our training room to discuss Issue 4. Please attend and see if we can address any questions or concerns that you have about Issue 4. We look forward to seeing you.
10-2-2013 The department is pleased to announce two new officers have been hired. These officers will replace personnel that retired last year.
Neal Hilbruner has previously worked for Kent PD as a Detention Officer. He received his OPOTA certification through the Kent State Police Academy. He has also worked part-time for Windham PD.
Kyle Auckland received his associates degree from the University of Akron and graduated from the University of Akron's basic Police Academy this year. He is currently working on his Bachelor's degree. He is also in the Ohio Army National Guard.
Both officers will begin their training next week. Congratulations gentlemen!
|(L-R) Chief Lee, Officer Auckland & Officer Hilbruner|
|(L-R) Officer Auckland & Officer Hilbruner|
Watch a Video
09-09-2013 View a new video featuring Chief Michelle Lee and City Manager Dave Rueller explaining why a new police building is needed.The video is on our New Police Bldg page, or click here to go to the video.