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Woodstock police unveil new look, introduce mascot

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By: Rebekah Fuchko

WOODSTOCK, Ga. — The Woodstock Police Department introduced their new brand identity, along with Buster, their new mascot, at the Woodstock city council meeting on Monday, Oct. 9, 2017.

Sgt. Randy Milligan, Lt. Matt O’Keefe and officers Keith McGraw and Nikoulas Petit-Alleyne of the Woodstock Police Department worked together to design new uniforms and a new department patch as a part of the new branding.

The new design of the uniforms is meant to give officers a more professional look in all navy blue, as well as be more comfortable for the officers by shifting the weight off the gun belt and up onto the vest.

It’s our hope to benefit our offices and keep them from having back pain, and they can look sharp while doing it,” said Woodstock Police Chief Calvin Moss. “It’s a whole lot more comfortable, I can tell you that much.”

According to a Woodstock Police Department press release, the new patch embodies the department’s mission with a protective shield symbolizing their commitments to the values of America, Georgia, the city of Woodstock and the law enforcement profession. The patch displays a bald eagle perched atop a banner reading “With Honor and Courage” and an olive branch signifying the department’s commitment to peace.

The department will take their rebranding a step further when they introduce the 2018 Ford Explorer Interceptor as their new patrol vehicle later this year.

In addition to their rebranding, Buster, the Woodstock Police Department’s new mascot, was introduced publicly and sworn into the police force by Woodstock Mayor Donnie Henriques.

Buster’s swearing-in was overlooked by two other canine mascots, Sparky, the official mascot of the National Fire Protection Association and nationwide Crime Dog McGruff from the National Crime Prevention Panel.

Henriques asked Buster to raise his right paw as he swore him in, adlibbing in some humor as he went.

“I swear I will adhere to and uphold the code of ethics, no matter what Sparky tells me to do,” Henriques said.

In addition to the Woodstock Police Department’s new changes, retired military Sgt. Dave Konwick, a representative for the American Legion, spoke to the city council about implementing the program in Woodstock.

“It’s really quite simple —  honor our veterans, and the costs to the citizens —  minimal,” Konwick said. “It’s a win-win, win situation. The veterans get recognized, the city gets recognized for recognizing veterans and some of that money goes toward helping veterans.”

The American Legion Banner Program works to recognize and honor veterans by allowing the families of veterans to apply for banners to be hung on lampposts and street poles throughout the city. Woodstock city council unanimously voted in approval for moving forward with discussions on the program at future meetings.

Other items unanimously approved for future discussion included the lowering of the speed limit on Arnold Mill Road and the ongoing changes to traffic and pedestrian safety measures in regard to crosswalks. The measures include more streetlights, longer crosswalks and additional handicapped curves.

In other business, the council unanimously voted in approval of all items on the consent agenda, the amendment to a text for the establishment of district portions to land development and the holding of public meetings for a municipal bond schedule revision and for a revision to the city water and sewage development charges.

Additionally, Oct. 11 was declared Field of Faith Day for the Fellowship of Christian Athlete’s and Oct. 23-31 was named Red Ribbon Week.

The Oct. 16 work session was canceled at the suggestion of the city manager, Jeffrey Moon, with members agreeing to meet again on Oct. 23.