SPD to use multi-color car to fight drugs

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 8, 2005

There is nothing inconspicuous about the Selma Police Department’s newest crime-fighting vehicle.

The Ford Crown Victoria, with it’s bright, color-changing paint job (purple if looked at head-on; sky-blue if viewed from the side) is a stand-out wherever it goes, which is exactly what the police want, says Interim Chief Jimmy Martin.

The flashy car that once belonged to a local drug dealer is now being used as a tool to teach children and teens to stay away from drugs.

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“We are going to be taking this car to school, and using it in parades and different events, to teach children about drug awareness,” Martin said. “We want high visibility with this car.”

Through donations provided by several companies, the car that was seized during a drug bust has been transformed into a ride that would make any hip-hop star jealous.

Along with the unique paint job, there are four large speakers in the trunk, the kind that could make house windows shake as the car drives by.

There are also plans to put TV screens in the back of the passenger and driver seats.

Detective Dorothy Cowan, who has been assigned the car, says its not likely she’ll be turing up the volume when she’s not using it for school or public events.

“I don’t like loud music,” she said.

Martin said the purpose of the car is to help build a rapport with schoolchildren.

“We want to teach them to stay away from drugs, alcohol, and rights of passage,” Martin said.

Cowan, who is also director of the Police Athletic League, said she is going to start by visiting elementary schools and “work my way up.”

“I want to stop them before they get into drugs,” she said.

Cowman plans to take her new police vehicle to schools within the coming weeks.