‘We have to educate young people’

Published 12:02 pm Monday, May 20, 2013

Brundidge Police Officer Daniel Cade. (Photo/Jaine Treadwell)

Brundidge Police Officer Daniel Cade. (Photo/Jaine Treadwell)

Brundidge officer talks about ways to reduce crime

For the first time ever, the Brundidge Police Department has a firearms instructor.

Officer Daniel Cade joined the city’s police department in August 2012 and brought with him the experience of a trained firearms instructor.

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Cade is FBI certified and Police Chief Moses Davenport said it is beneficial to have an officer with his training in the department.

As a young person growing up in Chicago, Cade said he saw a lot of gang activity but he was not involved because he wanted to be a positive influence in society – a part of the solution, not the problem.

Cade was interested in becoming a police officer and, after graduating from the police academy in Chicago, he went to work with the Cook County Hospital Police.

“You might not think so, but the hospital was a busy place for police officers,” Cade said. “The hospital police were responsible for the hospital facility and the grounds. A lot went on there – assaults, theft of narcotics and property, rape, suicides. We stayed busy.”

In 1996, family circumstances brought Cade to Alabama and he went to work in Jefferson County.

“Then, when Jefferson County had all of those financial problems and had to lay off a lot of people,” Cade said. “I was one of the unlucky ones.”

Cade had his commercial driver’s license and went work driving a truck.

“I was making a delivery in Brundidge and I liked the town,” he said. “I made a few inquiries as to whether the police department was hiring. Chief Moses Davenport talked to me and I got the job.”

Cade said being a police officer in a small, rural town is much different from policing cities like Chicago and Birmingham.

“When a call comes in, the response time is good. We can get there in a short time. In a small town, everybody knows everybody and that’s good in some ways but, in another way, it’s a hindrance,” he said. “When a crime is committed, it’s easier to solve because of the closeness of the community. But then, knowing everybody can make it harder on an officer to do his job. He’ll do his job but it’s just harder when you know the people involved.”

Crime is crime whether it’s in Chicago or Brundidge.

“Brundidge is a relatively safe place,” Cade said. “But we do have crimes; burglaries and narcotics are the biggest. But then, they are everywhere. The key to stopping both of those crimes is education. We have to educate young people so they’ll understand the dangers of drugs. If we can stop the drugs, burglaries will be reduced in a big way.”

For Cade, his goal is to develop good relationships with the people of the community.

“I want to earn their trust,” he said. “If I do that, I can do my job better.”

Cade said that, for the most part, the people of Brundidge seem satisfied that the Brundidge police officers are doing their job to make the city safe for all its citizens.