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April 18, 2008

CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
(617) 961-6682


On April 18th, officers from the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department took part in events during Law Day at the West Roxbury District courthouse. They met with over 150 students from five local schools that visited the courthouse to celebrate the importance of the American legal system and the rule of law.

Students attended from Holy Name Elementary, Charles Sumner Elementary, Henry Higginson Elementary, Oliver Hazard Perry Elementary and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart school as part of the “Straight Ahead Program,” a values–based program which focuses on the importance of making good choices, bullying, peer pressure and gang involvement. Graduation day for the students of the program is part of the annual West Roxbury Court Law Day celebration.

“Our goal is to help reinforce the same values,” said Mary Tracey–Walsh, Assistant Chief Probation Officer at the court, when briefed on the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Choice Officer Program. The Choice Program, created by Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral in December 2005, is designed to encourage children to respect themselves and others while helping them to prepare for their futures. Officers participating in the program speak with youths about the dangers of drug use and gang involvement, as well as the consequences of criminal activity while visiting schools throughout Suffolk County.

Representing the Sheriff’s Department, Sergeant Christine Chaney, Deputies Abe Ayuso, Shane Bouyer, Jeff Gardner, Deniqua Lopes, Robert Tempesta and Officer Le’Teya Thomas presented the Ident–A–Youth program and handed out safety tips activity books with Junior Deputy badges while talking with the students.

“The weather is beautiful for Law Day this year and it’s a great day for the community with the collaboration between the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department, Boston Police, State Police, Boston Fire Department, the DA’s office, Judge Coffey and all the staff members at West Roxbury courthouse, as well as the students” said Tracey–Walsh. “The involvement of the Sheriff’s Department is such a great hit with the kids, and staff members were excited when they heard the Sheriff’s Department was coming again this year.”

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