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LPD Chief named to LEAD board

By Melanie Ruberti

Melanie.ruberti@lagrangenews.com

LaGRANGE – LaGrange Public Chief Louis Dekmar has another title to add behind his name.

Dekmar recently joined the executive board of the Law Enforcement Against Drugs program, or LEAD.

The anti-drug presentations deter youth from abusing narcotics plus committing drug related crimes, bullying and violence, according to the LEAD website.

The program works with students inside the classroom and families within the community. It will take the place of the DARE program in the Troup County school system.

“What we like about the LEAD program is it is a multi-grade program,” explained Dekmar. “There are aspects of it (LEAD) that our officers can teach in a classroom and on the streets. The curriculum (LEAD) has been validated by the Department of Education. The teachers that were part of our pilot program were very impressed.”

A colleague made Dekmar aware of the LEAD program about a year ago, the Chief stated.

The department reviewed the presentation and hosted a seminar about it for law enforcement agencies, plus city and county leaders throughout the state of Georgia, including people in LaGrange.

The LEAD program is based in Allentown, New Jersey, according to their website.

“They (LEAD officials) asked if I would serve on the executive board,” said Dekmar. “They wanted people from different geographic areas … and also because I assessed the program …”

Dekmar will participate in several LEAD meetings a year, provide input and guidance on how law enforcement officials can promote and improve the program.

The LEAD program will be presented at local schools and community events by LaGrange police officers.

Melanie Ruberti is a reporter with LaGrange Daily News. She can be reached at 706-884-7311, ext. 2156.