Local News

Fayetteville Chaplain Sees the City From Inside a Police Car

Posted September 2, 1999 7:00 a.m. EDT

— The streets of Fayetteville look different at night, as a local pastor discovered from the front seat of a patrol car. His educational tour was part of a police department program to clean up problem neighborhoods.

Captain Bill Barefoot gave Pastor Jeff Isenhour his very first tour of the Fayetteville Police Department Thursday night.

After the tour, Isenhour saw the city through the eyes of a cop, as Barefoot took him through Fayetteville's high-crime areas.

"We do mission projects all over the world, but we saw things tonight that we ought to get involved in in our own city," Isenhour said.

Isenhour also discovered a new respect for police officers as he watched Barefoot pull a man over for speeding.

"As I watched Captain Barefoot walk up to the car I'm thinking, 'This is dangerous,'" he said.

Local religious leaders who go on the ride-along are asked to share the experience with their congregations. Barefoot says he knows what they will say.

"'When we rode with the officers this is what we saw. This is something we haven't seen before, and this is what needs to be done to help our police or help our city clean up our town and make it what it should be.'"

It is an experience Isenhour will never forget.

"You have to get out of the four walls of the church and get down and see it," he said.

Police say they plan to invite pastors from all over the city on their ride-alongs. If you want to get your church involved, call the Fayetteville Police Department's Community Affairs Office at (910) 433-1819.