Initiative pays off in caught criminals

By Maura Wery

The Riley County Police Department’s patrol chief told county commissioners Monday that the department’s new Laser Point initiative has caught three people believed to have committed around 30 recent vehicle burglaries.

Capt. Kurt Moldrup said the initiative predicted that crimes would be committed on Farm Bureau Road close to the Redbud Estates area, prompting the deployment of additional officers into the area. He said that deployment resulted in the burglars being caught.

“It’s a good program,” Moldrup said. “It puts our guys where they need to be.”

Moldrup also encouraged the public to be careful about keeping items in vehicles and leaving doors unlocked during the spring and summer months. He said because of the increased heat and people being outside, the risk also goes up for theft. He suggested making sure that all valuables are out of vehicles and locking doors before going out. He also cautioned motorists to be on the lookout for those who are biking and walking or running during this season.

Military Council

Commissioners agreed to consider giving John Armbrust of the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce funds for the Governor’s Military Council. Armbrust told the commission that the council helps grow and protect military installations in the state, help with veteran transition and their families and also help get defense related jobs in the area.

He said the council had received $10,000 from the City of Manhattan and $15,000 from the Chamber, and asked the county for a donation as well. Commissioners said they would consider the funding during their budget discussion, although they gave no date on when they would let Armbrust know.


Downtown Manhattan

The executive director of Downtown Manhattan Inc. updated commissioners about the Poyntz Avenue project.

Gina Scroggs said the project, which started in April, will replace all the curbing and storm drains between 6th Street and the Manhattan Town Center entrance on 4th Street. She said she and Brian Johnson, city engineer, have been working together to update business owners and members of the public regularly about the work that will take place that specific week.

Scroggs said she is going to try to keep everyone informed. “There will be times that they will need to speak with owners about the impact on their businesses,” but there would be “no problem dodging a project and coming back to it later if we need to,” she said.

Scroggs said the project should be completed sometime in mid-October.

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