New Police Station - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

11/03/05 - Center

New Police Station

by Donna McCollum

The Center Police Department is so new there isn't a sign for it yet, but everyone in town knows where it is. The modern, computerized, high security police station is completely opposite of what employees left. Chief Walter Shofner said, "We got 16 cameras inside and outside the building. The dispatcher can access the hallway, doors, the gates. We want to be open, but for security purposes we want someone to be escorted through the building."

Shofner is wanting the force of 14 to grow right along with the building it occupies. He said there's a need to add more employees. Shofner is still getting used to all the locked doors. He's proud to be in the new building even though he wasn't the first to occupy it thanks to Rita. "The Red Cross stayed here. National Guard out of Pennsylvania stayed here. DPS stayed here and some electric contractors stayed here and slept and worked out of here," said Shofner.

Now inmates can sleep here. Their quarters are a lot fancier than the old jail, but the door slams just the same. And when the next natural disaster comes along the city will have a large emergency operations center.

But what Shofner is most proud of is a very private place, the bathroom. Shofner recalled, "We never had our own bathroom. Up there we had what was up there at the lobby. That was it. This place, it's got 2 showers in here. Got the real pretty tile. They're nice. They went all out for us."

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