Community fights crime with annual Night Out

Story and photo by Dijon Rolle
USAG Kaiserslautern
Keidy Benitez reaches for pencils located at the Army Substance Abuse Program information table during the U.S. Army Garrison  Kaiserslautern Night Out event Aug. 8 at Pulaski Park.
Keidy Benitez reaches for pencils located at the Army Substance Abuse Program information table during the U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern Night Out event Aug. 8 at Pulaski Park.

Members of the KMC attended U.S. Army Garrison Kaiserslautern’s annual Night Out event Aug. 8 at Pulaski Park. The free event, hosted by members of  USAGK Directorate of Emergency Services and Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, is held annually to promote safety across the community, increase awareness about emergency service programs and prevent crime.

Representatives from the
Drug Abuse Resistance Education program, USAG Kaiserslautern’s Physical Security Office, PONDS security, the Army’s Alcohol and Substance Abuse Program, local military police, German fire and police departments and the Air Force explosive ordnance disposal flight and security forces, provided visitors with information on how to report suspicious activities, what to do if your child becomes missing, the dangers of drunken driving and more.

“Our main mission is to ensure that there is never an emergency to start with,” said Lt. Col. George Brown, Director of Emergency Services.

“We want to share as much information as possible on preventive measures like not overloading electrical circuits and ensuring your smoke and fire alarms are in good working condition.

This event is just one of the ways we can help community members keep themselves and their families safe at all times.

Brown also added that he hopes events like these can help put a stop to what he says is currently the number one crime in the Kaiserslautern community.

“The larceny of items out of automobiles is incredibly easy to prevent,” Brown said. “More than 90 percent of these cars were left unlocked and most left valuable items out in the open where criminals could see them.”

Both Army and Air Force community members attended the event. Wendy Wilson and her husband Air Force Master Sgt. DeJanairo Wilson, 521st Air Mobility Operations Wing, arrived from Spangdahlem about a week ago.

“I actually just saw the flyer earlier today while I was at an appointment. It’s our first time attending, and I think it’s a good event. It’s also a fun way to get the kids out, socialize and see what the community has to offer,” Wilson said.

Elsewhere, Eddie Wadlington, USAG Kaiserslautern Directorate Emergency Services Physical Security Chief, greeted the steady stream of visitors to his table “I think this is a great event and another way we can make sure everyone in the community is safe. It’s important that everyone understands what physical security is all about, especially children,” Wadlington said.

“Kids can see things that sometimes their parents don’t see. They can tell their momma and daddy, and their parents can make sure it’s reported.”

Physical security involves taking measures designed to deny unauthorized access to facilities, equipment or resources (checking ID cards when entering military installations).

These measures can also be used by individuals to protect their personnel property from damage or harm (locking car doors and writing down serial numbers for high-dollar value items).

The event also featured free food, a military police dog demonstration, a bouncy castle and information booths.

Visitors also took turns trying on a bomb suit courtesy of the Air Force’s 786th EOD Flight and exploring the inside of a military HUMVEE.

Kids also had an opportunity to take personal photos with Sparky the Fire Dog and Daren the Lion.