‘Night Out’ events bring together citizens, officers

Published 4:15 am Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Hundreds of Bogalusa citizens participated Tuesday, Oct. 2, in citywide activities for the 35th annual “National Night Out Against Crime.”

National Night Out is a nationwide campaign held every year as a way to improve relations between citizens and police officers, and encourage everyone to fight crime in any way that they can.

Four events were held simultaneously in Bogalusa, in each of the four districts monitored by the Bogalusa Police Department. Event locations were Columbia Street Pocket Park in District A, Avenue B Sports Complex in District B, Superior Avenue Church in District C, and William Bailey Park on Austin Street in District D.

Bogalusa citizens, including elected officials and law enforcement officers, joined at the four locations for community engagement and neighborhood camaraderie. Food, music and activities were provided.

At Columbia Street Pocket Park, Bogalusa Police Chief Kendall Bullen spoke about why he chose to have the city participate in National Night Out for the first time in the city’s history.

“I want to thank everybody for coming out tonight,” Bullen said. “It took a lot of time and effort to organize this event. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement, while bringing back a true sense of community.

“Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances. The safety of our community depends on both law enforcement and the neighbors they serve. Preventing and solving crime is a community effort.”

BPD officers and deputies with the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office were assigned to each event, to provide security and law enforcement information to citizens.

Bullen said that he was impressed by the turnout at the Columbia Street event, and mentioned that he would pay a visit to the other three events as well.

“Enough is enough,” he said. “It’s time we as residents of Bogalusa and surrounding areas stand together to combat crime in our neighborhoods. We have more good people in our city than we do bad — we have way more good people in our city than we do criminals.

“And I believe it’s time that the good people of our city stand together and say ‘good bye’ to crime in our neighborhoods. I think we, as citizens of Bogalusa, have a moral obligation to make our community a safer place for all of us to live.”