Local law enforcement heroes respond to their new normal

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — While everyone has switched gears and adjusted to working from home, our men and women in blue are still making the safety of our community their main priority. 

Like many industries, law enforcement’s day to day operations are not ‘business as usual’ now. 

Lt. Jim Scott, with North Little Rock Police Department, and Deputy Johnny Hicks, with Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, said as difficult as this has all been, two things have never been clearer. 

One, they miss their community and two, they are still here for you. 

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“That’s not going to change. That didn’t change before this and it’s not going to change during or after it,” Hicks said. 

Scott said at a time like this, public safety is not a lower priority, but a higher one.

“One thing I can promise you is that the police department is going to be out there every day doing our job,” he said. 

It’s a vow that’s been kept by Scott for over three decades. 

“In my 31 years, this is probably one of the most challenging events we’ve gone through,” he said. 

The North Little Rock Police Department is adjusting to the pandemic by re-shaping operations. 

Scott said this includes changes like front office doors being shut, asking a series of health-related questions before dispatching an officer, and having PPE always on hand. 

“This is something we’ve had to have our families on board with. It kind of changed our dynamics, the way we go to work every day and go home every day,” he said. 

Just a few miles down the road, at Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Hicks said he is missing that normal routine.

“For a long time, I’ve went out every single day and I visit several of the same people in the communities and I miss them. They turn into family for me,” he said. 

Trying to keep that connection strong, Hicks said he has turned to social media with videos and selfies, reminding his community they’re still number one. 

“We protect and we serve and that’s exactly what we are going to continue doing,” he said. 

Wearing different badges with the same purpose, both law enforcement heroes agreed they are getting front row seats to the unity that is taking place within the streets.

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“It’s been a long time since I’ve seen families be families right now,” Hicks said. 

“It’s really empowering just seeing how the community is coming together,” Scott said. 

Both agencies will continue to adjust their operations with COVID-19’s impact.