Spotlight on the Valley Police Department:
Valley Police Department, October 1988
Magazine Article About the Valley Police Department.

The Nebraska Police Officer was the Quarterly Journal of the Police Officers’ Association of Nebraska, also known as POAN.

The article was researched and written by me during the summer of 1988, and was published in The Nebraska Police Officer magazine in their October 1988 issue. This was the first time anything written by me had been published. I received a Commendation from the Mayor and City Council as a result.

The Nebraska Police Officer, Volume 38, Number 4, October 1988

The photographs were taken by my good friend, Bob Keeler of Valley, and from my perspective contain the most interest to me when looking back on 1988. (All photos can be viewed full size from the article linked above.)

The photo of the large, three story, red brick building; was the Former Valley High School, then Valley City Hall where the Police Department was located. It has since been torn down, and the property is now for the most part, a City Park. The current Valley City Hall and Police Department is now on Spruce Street in the former office building for the Omaha Public Power District. Just to the left of City Hall, outside of view in this photo is a Heliport, complete with landing lights. It was primarily used for Life Flight air ambulance, but we used it on at least one occasion for a law enforcement related activities. The patrol car shown is a 1986 Ford LTD Crown Victoria. This was my ride, and was designated as Car 54. This car had a 351 V8 engine, while Car 51 had a 302 V8 engine. 51 had better acceleration, but 54 had a higher top end.

1988 View of Valley City Hall

The next photo contained a collection of items which many thought were antiques and museum pieces. While the five pointed star badge was an antique, all the other items were contemporary for the time. The revolver is a Smith and Wesson, Model 19, .357 with a four inch barrel and Pachmeyer grips. It was my duty weapon from 1980 to about the end of 1988. I still own it today. The Peerless handcuffs were mine. While on duty, I carried two sets of handcuffs, and I often needed both of them. The “eagle” badge was actually my coat badge, and while it bears Number 8 as the badge number, my actual badge or serial number was V114.

The photo of the “traffic stop” was taken on the west side of the city near the Junction of NE-64 and US-275, facing northwest. The “subject vehicle” used was Bob’s Chevrolet Blazer, with his friend Alison behind the wheel. The location was picked as it displayed the 40 MPH Speed Limit Sign, and the signs indicating the Junction of US-275 and NE-64. This area has changed significantly since 1988. US-275 has been moved to pass along the north side of the city, and is now a freeway. This stretch of road is now known as Richmuth road. The water tower for the old Union Pacific Stock Yards is gone, as I assume it interfered with the National Weather Service Radar which is now located just west, along NE-64. Just ahead, an overpass now crosses over Richmuth Road as part of the interchange from the new US-275 Freeway to NE-64. Clearly visible, parallel with the highway are the railroad tracks of the Union Pacific Railroad Mainline. Just beyond the trees is the property for the factory of Valmont Industries.

1988 View of US-275 approaching the Junction of NE-64

The next photo shows a handsome young police officer, (me,) behind the wheel of Car 54. The radio was a 100 Watt, Lo-Band, Motorola Micor, 4 channel, scanning radio. While the control head was mounted up front, the big radio itself was mounted in the trunk. This was later replaced with a smaller, 99 channel, scanning, Midland Lo-Band Radio, and a similar Midland Hi-Band radio. The Lo-band radios were centered around 39 to 42 MHz which comprised the Statewide Radio Network. The Hi-Band radios were centered around 155 MHz, which was mainly for the Douglas County Sheriff’s Network, and other law enforcement agencies. The shotgun mounted in the rack was a .12 Gauge, Remington 870 Pump. It was easy to take out of the rack, but very difficult to put back in to the rack. Barely visible, is my key chain hanging from the ignition. Included with the keys is a 4 inch Kubotan, which is a defensive weapon for law enforcement.

I was about age 29 in this photo.

Finally, the last photo shows the Hewlett-Packard Vectra CS Computer. While this is a dinosaur compared to today’s computers, this was very cutting edge at the time. It came with IBM DOS 2.1, and was later upgraded to MS DOS 3.32. It had a whopping 30 Mb Hard drive. This machine would take up to five minutes to crunch a database query, which today would run instantaneously on a contemporary machine. This machine was totally stand alone as there was no network or internet connections. The internet was not quite ready for the public yet!

While a dinosaur compared to today's computers,
this was cutting edge in 1988.

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