***Feel Good Friday Story***
On December 27 2017, a complaint was raised reference a specific transient male, Terrell Menniefee, who had been staying in the downtown Indio area for quite some time. The complaint was in regards to Mr. Menniefee sleeping near the downtown businesses every night and then leaving the area a mess when he would leave in the morning. Several businesses came together and emailed the Indio Police Department due to the amount of trash in the area being caused by this male. The email was later sent to the Indio Police Department’s Quality of Life Team, Sgt. Franco, Officer Haworth and Officer Ibarra. Together the team worked diligently to come up with a solution. Some of the ideas were to take Mr. Menniefee to the mission to try and get him help, cite him for the violations he was committing or incarcerate him for a short period of time due to the misdemeanor violations. As many of you know, all these solutions would have been a temporary fix as Mr. Menniefee was not interested in any of the outreach resources the officers were offering and he would only be incarcerated for a short period time.
Officer Haworth and Officer Ibarra knew Mr. Menniefee was not interested in their help as they had been working with him for the past month. Mr. Menniefee was uncooperative at first and did not want to speak with the officers. Both officers visited Mr. Menniefee on a daily basis to try and build rapport with him. Through these contacts, they began to learn about Mr. Menniefee’s family and where he was from. Officer Haworth decided to think outside of the box and he began to use his resources to locate a phone number for Mr. Menniefee’s mother who has been residing in Long Beach, California. Officer Haworth explained his reason for the call and Mr. Menniefee’s mother was relieved as she had last seen her son in January of 2016. Ms. Menniefee believed her son’s last location was in Hemet, California at the time she was contacted by Officer Haworth. Mr. Menniefee’s mother told Officer Haworth she would be grateful to see her son again but did not have the means of transportation to respond to Indio. Officer Haworth and Officer Ibarra knew they had to help. They located Mr. Menniefee and told him of their findings. Mr. Menniefee was just as excited to see his mother and told the officers he would be just as grateful to see his mother again. Officer Ibarra and Officer Haworth transported Mr. Menniefee to the Coachella Valley Rescue Mission where they allowed him to shower and they provided a new outfit for him to wear when reuniting with his mother. After Mr. Menniefee was showered, dressed and fed, Officer Ibarra and Officer Haworth drove Mr. Menniefee to Riverside, California on December 29, 2017, where they met his mother and reunited the two for a very happy ending.
This is just a great example of how going above and beyond to find a better solution to solve a problem rather than just resulting in criminal prosecution.
KESQ News Channel 3 KMIR News The City of Indio Desert Sun CBS Local 2