Opp among safest cities

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 22, 2016

The city of Opp has been named on of the safest places in Alabama.

A report released from The ValuePenguin and shared on the Opp Police Department’s website this week says the organization analyzed the most recent FBI crime report to determine the safest places in the state.

The score takes into account violent and property crime and adjusts it per population size.

Opp is ranked fifth in small towns with populations of 5,000 to 10,000, and 13th overall.

The organization gave the city a crime score of 1,194.

Enterprise is ranked 34th on the list with a score of 2,180; Atmore ranks 39th with a score of 2,285; Greenville is 49th with a score of 2,616; Brewton is 51st with a score of 2,655.

Helena, Satsuma, Vestavia Hills, Southside and Rainbow City are the top 5.

Opp Police Chief Mike McDonald gave all the credit to his patrol officers, investigators and the dispatchers.

“The principal reasons are our patrol division, investigators and dispatchers are working together,” he said. “All we do in administration is keep it between the lines.”

McDonald said the Lord has smiled on the city of Opp.

“The mayor and his administration has seen that we are adequately staff and provided the equipment we need to do a good job,” he said. “The community has been very supportive of us and particularly in the last few weeks, with a number of officers being shot.”

McDonald said he was pleased when he saw the ranking.

“We knew we were having a good year,” he said. “We have cleared some cases and we have squashed some things before they got out of hand.”

Mayor John Bartholomew praised the police department for their hard work.

“I have known for a long time that our officers and administration at the Opp Police Department go above and beyond and are some of the best trained officers around,” he said. “I believe this awesome information is due to the fact that our officers continue their training and that we have given them the best equipment in order to perform their duties.”

Bartholomew said that law enforcement officers continue to be under intense scrutiny because of a few bad apples in the police vocation.

“We also continue to mourn as more and more officers across the country are murdered in retaliation.”