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MPD Women in the News

During the early years of women being allowed to ride in squad cars and actually perform police duties the local press wrote articles about the training, issues and obstacles women have had to deal with in order to become officers with the MPD. 

Here is a sampling of some of those articles that appeared either in The Commercial Appeal or the now defunct Memphis Press Scimitar: 


The 1970's

POLICE TRAINING ACADEMY NOW HAS COEDS

First three women to undergo police training sessions along with male recruits were given a tour of Central Headquarters as part of their orientation. Warrant Officer Ronald England of the Police Public Information Office conducted the tour. From left: Mrs. Clay B. West, Mrs. Janet Gault, and Patricia Lynn Huggins and Officer England.

There'll be a new look in the gymnasium classes at Memphis Police training classes this week. There'll also be a new look in the classrooms and at the firing range.

For the first time, women are being trained along with men for police jobs.

Patricia Lynn Huggins, 32, Mrs. Janet Gault, 22 and Mrs. Clay West, 28 began training today. 

Previously, policewomen were trained in separate classes.

"Everyone is as nice as they can possibly be, " said Mrs. Gault. "I'm just as proud as I can be that I'm able to do this."

All of the women said they plan to make a career of police work.

I've always admired law enforcement agencies and the work they do," said Mrs. West. "So I decided I would like to become a part of it."

Miss Huggins said she became interested in police work through her boss, Fred Klyman.

"He is executive director of the Memphis and Shelby County Association for Retarded Children," she said. "but he was in the police reserve system. I would talk to some of the police officers and recruiters who would call him. They talked me into it."

Policewomen who are now working for the department are scheduled for an in-service training program to put them on the same level as the new women who are going through the complete training program.

The girls said the physical training program, which will include techniques of escape from physical attack, the mechanics of arrest and self defense, will be one of the hardest parts of the program.

"I've never fired a gun before either," added Mrs. Gault. "I just hope I don't shoot somebody."

While they will probably begin as Meter Maids, Mrs. Gault and Mrs. West said they have no preference in which department they would like to work when they've completed training.

Miss Huggins, however, said she would like to work in the Intelligence Division, if possible.

"Of course," she said, "I realize I'll have to start at the bottom. I'm willing to shovel snow if that's what they want me to start doing."

All three were anxious to get started with their new careers.

"We were supposed to be at the Training Center at 7 a.m.," said Miss Huggins.  "I got there at 6:30 just so I would not be late."

Memphis Press Scimitar - January 12, 1970.

WOMEN TO RIDE IN POLICE CRUISERS

Women will begin riding in patrol cars next month as part of another experimental program by the department, officials said Tuesday.

Deputy Chief W. O. Crumby said that upon graduation on May 1, three women enrolled in the department's training academy will be assigned to police cruisers with male officers. He said the program will become permanent if it is effective.

Each of the women will be assigned to one the single manned cars now operating, Chief Crumby said. Twelve cruisers manned by one officer began patrolling the city on an experimental basis April 9 in an effort to put more police cars on the streets and to shorten the time it takes to answer calls.

Chief Crumby declined to identify the women enrolled in the academy but said they will be answering calls  "of a non-violent nature."

Patrolwoman Freeda Bowers Monday became the first woman officer assigned to a police cruiser, but her assignment is temporary. She is a volunteer officer assigned to ticket pedestrians in a federally funded pedestrian safety program.

 Newspaper and date unknown.

TWO FEMALES PROMOTED TO LIEUTENANT 

By Marilyn Duncan – Commercial Appeal

“I’m proud of my promotion and the opportunity that’s been given me,” said Lt. Mary Fowler, one of two women officers recently promoted to the rank of lieutenant with the Memphis Police Department.

“I wouldn’t have wanted that promotion if I felt I had received it only because I am a woman and not because I am a qualified officer.

 “I don’t think any woman wants to take a man’s job.  They want to show that they are qualified.  The men who resent the female officers might as well accept the fact that we’re here to stay.”

Lt. Louise Dunavant, the other officer promoted, said, “We want to work alongside men, equally.  It’s a very interesting career for women.  Women are needed in three areas.”

The areas are homicide and vice.  Lt. Fowler is assigned to the homicide bureau and Lt. Dunavant, who was on the vice squad, was recently transferred to the juvenile bureau.

Both officers, with more than 10 years on the force, started in intersection control, “checking meters among other things.”

They were later “borrowed” by the vice bureau as volunteers to work on special cases where female officers were needed.

“Whenever they had something special for us to do we always volunteered,” said Lt. Fowler.  “Both of us wanted to make police work our careers.”

After several months of special details both were promoted to detectives and assigned to the vice bureau.

Asked if the men in the department resent the women as officers, Lieutenant Fowler said hesitantly, “Yes, they resent us.  I’d say the better educated and more open minded officers have accepted women and tried to help us.  And the new men coming on the force seem to accept us without resentment.

“But there is a group in the middle that will never accept us.  There will always be that segment that resents us jut because we're women."

When their promotions were announced, it was said that as lieutenants, the women would have men under their command.

“I don’t know what my duties as a lieutenant will be,” said Lieutenant Dunavant.  “Whatever the director and chief assign to me, I will do my best.”

In the vice bureau Lieutenant Dunavant has worked on “all kinds of cases.”

“We handle child molesting, incest, exhibitionists, bigamists, abortion and gambling.  I’ve also been used as a decoy in obscene phone call complaints, and I’ve assisted in returning female prisoners from other states.

“Most of the time with women prisoners they like to have a female officer along to protect the man’s reputation.  A woman prisoner could easily accuse an officer of something that he didn’t do.”

Lieutenant Dunavant has two children, a son who lives in Houston, Texas and a teenage daughter at home.

“Both my children are proud of me,” she said.  “I guess that’s why I’m so proud.  My daughter worries about me and I think, because  of my job, I’m more cautious about her safety than an ordinary parent would be.  It becomes more real when you constantly see victims of crimes against women and children.

She has been with the vice bureau for eight and a half years and feels that more women are needed in this type of police work.

“There’s no doubt that women make terrific investigators, especially in cases where women and children are victims.  Maybe a woman is a natural-born snoop, but often we’re able to get closer to a female victim.

“But women also need to have the opportunity to work in areas where they can do just as well as men.  They shouldn’t come into this profession, or any profession, with out knowing of the elements of risk and the danger to life.

“However, I feel safer than the average woman walking down the street.  I am prepared to protect myself.  I have been trained for it, just like the male officers.”

Lieutenant Dunavant enjoys working a case “from beginning to end. I take great pride in preparing my cases and seeing the ultimate when it’s presented in court.  It’s really exciting seeing it unfold.  It makes you feel that you have accomplished something.

Lieutenant Fowler has been with the homicide bureau a little more than three years.  “I like this department better,” she said

She was in vice and narcotics for three years (before the two bureaus were separated) and in domestic intelligence for 18 months.

“I started off like all the new men do,” she said, “We handle murders, assaults, suicides and natural deaths that occur at home – actually any death that occurs when a doctor is not in attendance.”

“I don’t enjoy doing it.  The only way you can keep the deaths from bothering you is not to become emotionally involved.  I have a high respect for life.”

Lieutenant Fowler hasn’t found any difficulty in dealing with victims or arrested persons because she is a woman.  “I just tell them I’m a police officer, and there’s nothing they can say that I haven’t heard before.”

Very seldom, she said, does a female officer go to the scene of a rape case.  That visit usually is made by a uniformed officer. “In most cases they’d  rather talk to a woman than a man,”  said Lieutenant Fowler, “but you also have to consider that some of the cases we get are not legitimate rapes.”

“When you arrest a man on a charge as serious as that you have to be sure the girl is telling the truth.  I ask the girls the same questions that will be asked in court.  If they can’t accept the questions here, it reflects on how they’ll hold up in court.”

As for her future duties, Lieutenant Fowler is “in limbo right now.  We haven’t received our permanent orders.  We’ll just have to wait and see.”

She feels there is a definite need for women in law enforcement. “It’s long overdue.  The police department is making an effort to recruit more women.”

Lieutenant Fowler has three children, one son who attends North Texas State University in Denton and another son and a daughter at Memphis State University.  Her son at MSU already is taking some law enforcement courses and her son in Texas works for the Dallas security police at Love Field.

“My children are delighted with my work,” she said. “They’re real proud of me.”

Both women agree that police work is not easy work for a woman.  “We feel that we have to prove ourselves,” said Lieutenant Dunavant. “That’s the reason most women do work hard at their jobs, any job.  But we get a kind of satisfaction out of this work that’s unequal to anything else.”  

Memphis Press Scimitar - 1973.

The 1980's

ALLOWING WOMEN IN PATROL CARS PASSES SEVENTH SUCCESSFUL YEAR

On April 16, 1973 a woman police officer stepped out of a patrol car and stopped two jaywalkers.  The woman wrote out two citations and then drove off with her partner looking for more traffic violators.

Her shift ended routinely.  But the day was historic.

The day marked a monumental change in policy in the Police Department’s use of women employees.  No longer would women officers be banned from riding in the squad cars.  They would now share duties equally with male officers whether in writing a traffic citation or confronting a deranged mental patient waving a sawed-off shotgun.

Jail matrons, meter maids and other female police employees praised the new equal opportunity policy with hallelujahs. 

Male officers sang a different tune.  They complained that women officers would get themselves shot and also endanger their partners’ lives.  The men argued that women were not physically equipped to manhandle their way out of rough street situations.

Women officers also had to contend with wives who were firmly against having their husband’s ride with women, fearing that budding of amorous relations the squad cars.

Seven years have now passed since the symbolic day.  No woman officer has been killed or seriously wounded nor has a patrolman been killed because of any mistake made by a female officer.  And complaints from wives are rare.

Women continue to ride with men and others are riding together or alone in some of the roughest Memphis neighborhoods.

Meanwhile, the number of women officers continues to grow under the 1973 federal guidelines which require 20 percent of police academy graduates to be female.  There are not 59 women officers and 39 of them are working in squad cars.  Four women have attained the rank of lieutenant and police officials say there probably will be women captains within the next few years.

Jim Herbert, police deputy director of administration, does not think women will ever compose more than 15 percent of the force, but he said: “I think within the foreseeable future women can attain any rank within the department.”

One six-year woman veteran agrees that women’s ranks will continue to increase, but she remains skeptical of the Police Department’s intentions. “Personally, I think it will change just because the Justice Department will make them.  They don’t think they should change.”

Now that women officers are well entrenched in the Police Department, do men accept their female colleagues?

One precinct commander laughed when he was asked the question, “I wouldn’t touch that with a 10-foot pole.”

Others will say that feelings about women police are divided, but many officers probably would agree with Marshall, who remarks “Every police department in the United States would like to have an all male police force.”

He says men’s attitudes against women have lessened over the years, but it still causes him to worry.  For instance, he said some police overreact in dangerous situations because they feel women officers will not back them up, while other male officers overprotect their female colleagues.

Still it is hard to determine how widespread the dissatisfaction is with women officers.  Men usually keep their comments confined to all male gatherings and it is certainly not a topic the men discuss with the women officers.

Generally, the older men are the ones most resistant to women officers.  During idle moments in their offices, some veterans of the force take delight in criticizing women police.  Women, they say, are not strong enough to back up their colleagues in critical situations and they try to avoid danger.

A captain summarized the feelings his colleagues. “Sometimes it gets down to the nitty-gritty and I don’t want some cute 120-pound blonde working with me”

Young male officers, however, have gone through the academy with women and they are used to their presence.  Some police officials who were interviewed believe many young officers have accepted women as equals on the job.

But when one young officer was asked his opinion, he replied: “My mustache is black now, but it turned half grey when I was riding with a woman 4 to 12 in North Memphis.  They can’t cut the mustard.  They are scared. They overreact.”

All the women interviewed said negative feelings of men were pretty well kept submerged at the precincts and the women have not been intimidated by them.  But some said they are aware of other women police who are bothered by men’s attitudes.  “I know some women on the force who feel they have to prove themselves because of what the men say.  I feel these women might get hurt because of it,” said one women officer.

“Men will test you,” said Elizabeth Landrum of the West Precinct. “They are going to try to see what they can get away with.  If you let them bother you, they will keep doing it.”

All the women agreed that the physical requirements of the job are overemphasized by the critics of women police.  They say violent situations are rare and when they do happen men are usually just as vulnerable to harm as a women.

“I really feel that if a female uses her head, 99 percent of the time she won’t have to face physical confrontation,” said Georgia Gantt of the West Precinct.

In potentially explosive situations, women must be more patient than male officers and not act brashly because they cannot afford the risk, women officers agree.

“You can go into an agitated situation and cause a riot.  The men officers are big enough and strong enough to back up what they say, the women are not,” said one woman rookie.

At least one recent incident rocked the suggestion that women officers are meek and mild.

Ms. Gantt and Pat Lovett, also of the West Precinct were filling out a routine report at the Veterans Administration Medical Center last month.  A man in the hall went berserk, grabbed a female security guard and pushed the muzzle of his cocked sawed-off shotgun in her hair.  

While the man yelled out death threats, the guard and Ms. Gantt – standing a few feet away – urged him to give up.  All the while, Ms. Lovett, hidden kept her gun trained on the man and prepared for the worst.

The worst never happened.  Within a few minutes the man surrendered and was quickly handcuffed before any other police arrived.

“They put two exceptional women together, they got into an exceptional situation and they handled it exceptionally well,” said one police official.

Ironically, women like Ms. Gantt and Ms. Lovett – who are regarded by their commanders as excellent officers- are the severest critics of female shortcomings on the force.  Both of them are critical of many women officers because they feel they are not physically or mentally tough enough for the challenge.  

Patty Lovett, pictured here as a lieutenant in the 90's, is currently a Major and still as excited about police work today as she was as a patrol officer. 


“Many of the men have been put in hazardous situations with women in the car,” Ms. Lovett said.  She said she also worries about the women who need two fingers to pull the trigger of a service revolver. 

Ms. Gantt agreed.  “One of these days these women are going to get hurt and not come back.”

By Lynn O’Shaughnessy Memphis Press-Scimitar staff writer – 5/16/80


"WEAKER SEX" POLICE CADETS PUT CLOUD 
ON TRAINING PROGRAM

How physically strong must a person be before he or she is allowed to wear the blue uniform of a police Officer? 

That question has bothered officials at the Memphis Police Department Training

Academy since they began preparing women for duty in patrol cars in 1973.  Academy officials concede that until they know the answer, the physical training tests will remain arbitrary and could allow recruits with “critical weaknesses” to graduate.

Those who have been dissatisfied with the training program are numerous: academy instructors, the U.S. Justice Department, some police officers and Police Director E. Winslow Chapman.

The training practices also have been challenged in court by two women recruits who called the test procedures discriminatory.  The two eventually settled out of court, re-entered the academy and graduated with the 1979 class.

Dr. Fred Klyman, director of the police academy, said the only way to stop the grumbling is to conduct a study which will determine precisely what physical abilities are needed to function successfully as a police officer.  Klyman admits, however, that the chances for such a costly study any time soon are remote.  The Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA), which could provide a large chunk of the funds, may be dismantled by a budget conscious Congress.

Complicating the problem has been the existence of the Justice Department’s quota guidelines or women officers.  The Memphis Police Department signed a consent decree in 1973 which committed it to filling 20 percent of each graduating class with women.  If the quota is not met one year, the shortfall must be compensated for in the next.

After the quota was established, academy officials were faced with two unpleasant choices.  They could maintain the academy’s strict physical and firearms standards geared toward men and not meet the quota, thus possibly touching off legal action by women and the federal government. Or they could change the standards and cut corners to allow more women to graduate.

Those at the academy opted to lower the standards.  Consequently, some at the academy believe some women and men are graduating without having the physical qualifications needed by police officers.

“The net result is that a certain number of women are given more slack than the city would like.”  Said one officer who formerly served at the academy.  “There are a few women who couldn’t even meet women’s scores.  We’d have to make a decision and the city would usually come in and keep them.”

Another academy instructor, who wanted to remain anonymous, agreed, “Some women are in better shape than men,” but “the majority of women are not in good physical shape.  They are weak.” 

To comply with Justice Department wishes entrance and graduation tests were changed and remedial sessions were held to bring many of the women and some men up to passing levels.

Chapman said lowered standards have caused a “double-edged” problem for the department.  It has allowed some women to graduate who normally would have flunked, as well as males who never would have been hired during the days of the all male force.

As a result, Chapman said the department has begun to tighten the standards.  The police director however, said he is certain changing the requirements will bring protests from the Justice Department.

By- Lynn O’Shaughnessy – Memphis Press-Scimitar staff writer, 1980.

 

POLICE ACADEMY TRAINING HAS CHANGED TO ACCOMMODATE WOMEN

To appease the Justice Department, the entire 1979 recruiting class was stopped for three weeks while instructors worked to get unconditioned recruits into shape. A few men and women only needed help the first week to build up their strength, but it took three weeks to get all of the women up to grade, said Lt. J.A. Bullard who is in charge of physical fitness training. 

Unfortunately, Bullard said the delay in the training caused “a feeling of alienation” within the class and created an extra expense for taxpayers.

With the extra help, all the women in the 1979 class passed the physical tests required for graduation.  But Bullard added, “If someone hadn’t passed I don’t know what we would have done.  We probably would not have had the guts to fire them because of the threatened lawsuits.”

Over at the shooting range, the problems continue for women. Their smaller hands and weaker grip have created the need for more help from instructors.  Most women can overcome the disadvantage however, with practice and by repeating such exercises as squeezing a tennis ball to build up strength, said Lt. W.L. Dickey, who is in charge of firearms training.

Even with the extra practice, however, some women are graduating from the academy who are unable to fire a gun without using one finger from each hand to pull the trigger.

Dickey said that he was passing women who could successfully complete the tests with a two finger pull in the hopes that they would get their hands in shape during their first year on the force.  Most of the women have overcome the problem by the time they come back a year later for in-service training, he said.

The academy also requires that each recruit shoot passing scores with his or her weak hand, but Dickey said it is “very common” for new women recruits to be unable to do this.  Again women are allowed to use two hands to accomplish this when necessary, but out on the street this could put them into dangerous situations, Dickey said.

For example if a right handed officer needs to shoot around a left corner of a building, he should pull the trigger with his left hand, thereby only exposing his left eye and part of his hand.  If the officer in the same situation can only shoot with his right hand, most of his body will be exposed.

Some police recall cases where the tensions are lessened on the service revolvers so women will be able to pull the trigger, which usually requires 12 to 15 pounds of pressure.

One woman officer, who has been called an excellent marksman by her colleagues, said she saw this done while she was on the range.  Apparently, someone at the range loosened the tension on the gun of a woman having problems with the weapon and it caused the hammer to hit the shell less forcefully.  The officer pulled the trigger six times, but three times the gun did not fire.

Police cadets today must jump fences, scale walls, pick up manhole covers and run through a sewer.  The exercises are part of the obstacle course which must be passed for admission into the academy and for graduation.

Klyman said he is ready to scuttle the obstacle course and Bullard said he would be glad to get rid of it.

The obstacle course was started last year after Justice Department officials expressed concern that tests at the academy were arbitrary and unfair to women.  The Justice Department officials felt the obstacle course would realistically measure recruits’ skills in job-related tasks.

Before the obstacle course was adopted last year, an agility test – the darling of academy instructors – was used to weed out about 60 percent of the academy applicants.  The rugged test required recruits to complete such things as 100 pushups, 100 leg raises, 15 chin-ups, 100 deep knee bends and a two-mile run in 14 minutes.

“That old agility test we gave was almost a scientific tool- it eliminated arbitrariness.  We were extremely proud of it,” Bullard said.

Over the years, the scores on the agility test proved to be an excellent predictor of a male recruit’s chances for graduating from the academy, Bullard said. Any applicant who could score a 70 on the test was almost assured that he would graduate while anyone scoring 69 or less would have almost no chance of passing later.  The cutoff grade was 70.

It took until 1978 for a woman to pass the agility test the first time around.  Georgia Gantt, now assigned to the West Precinct, and two other women took the honors that year.

According to Klyman, the Justice Department wanted to know why the agility test was so superior.  Would a man who could easily do 100 pushups necessarily be a better officer than a women who could only finish 50?

Klyman said they could not sufficiently defend charges of arbitrary testing, so the academy devised the obstacle course.

However, the obstacle course posed a problem for the instructors: the civil service had set no time limit for running through the obstacle course.  Consequently, would a applicant who ran through the course in 10 minutes be accepted along with the persons who finished under two minutes?

A three-minute time limit was set at the academy.  Officials conceded the limit could have been called arbitrary because the civil service never established a time.

After the brief experience with the obstacle course, Bullard complains that the test can hide “critical weaknesses” in recruits.  Klyman says he wonders if the obstacle course is even good training.  For instance, Klyman questions the courses requirements that recruits run through a dark sewer. “I’m not sure that’s even good police practice to go running after someone in a sewer,” he said.

Klyman said the old agility test with its rugged physical requirements is a better predictor of a recruit’s chances for success as an officer and so he will recommend its use for the next recruit class.  But Klyman is not sure the Justice Department will agree.

Melinda Stroud, 24, is glad she is finally a police officer.  Ms. Stroud and Brenda Harris were fired in 1976 after they flunked the firearms and physical tests at the academy.  They both claimed they were discriminated against and were not given enough extra help to pass the tests. 

The Civil Service Commission voted unanimously to reinstate the two cadets as police dispatchers and ordered that the women be allowed to try out for the next training class.  Nonetheless, both women filed suits against the police department and in 1979 the matter was settled out of court.  The women were graduated from the academy in 1979 and were given $2,600 in back pay.

Everything I’ve been through is worth it.  I wish I had been here a long time ago,” Ms. Stroud said.

(Since the interview, Ms Stroud was charged with possessing marijuana with intent to sell after officers, responding to a tip, searched her car.  She was later cleared and her estranged husband was charged with subornation to perjury in the case.  Ms. Stroud had maintained that her husband had set her up.)

Ms. Stroud said she did not feel discriminated against any longer and that she enjoyed her patrol job in the West Precinct.  “After the lawsuit was settled, I never had any problems.  Nobody ever said anything about it.  I thought they might.”

Even though Ms. Stroud weights only 100 pounds, and stands 5 feet 4, she said her size has not prevented her from completing her job satisfactorily.  She and other women police said good women officers compensate for their lesser physical strength by thinking quickly and talking their way out of tough situations.

Ms. Stroud admits that a prejudice against women officers will remain. “You can’t argue with them.  They’ve got their minds made up so there is not use discussing it.  There are people from the top command down to patrolmen who think women have no place as police,” she said.

Ms Stroud and Brenda Harris are not the only ones who have made police officers cautious about avoiding lawsuits against the academy.

Six women and one man were cut from the 1978 class two days before graduation for failing firearms or physical tests or both.  The group talked with Police Director E. Winslow Chapman the day after the announcement and on graduation day five of the recruits were allowed to graduate with the stipulation that they complete the physical tests during probation.

There is one important fact about women police officers which is not contained in the academy record books.  No woman officer has ever been killed or seriously injured since they began patrolling the streets in 1973.  No one – not even critics of women officers – can recall where a male officer was seriously hurt because of the failing of a woman officer.

But one academy official explained the women’s record this way. “If they (women) are being put in real assignments, then policing may not be a physical job as we define it, but I think it is.  I suspect we are not utilizing women in full capacity.”

Asked whether women officers are pulling their weight, Chapman declined to comment.  However, he did say problems have been caused by male officers who have little confidence in their women colleagues.

Male officers with women partners, Chapman said, “react differently and sometimes overreact.  They feel they won’t be backed up physically.”

Chapman said he knows of at least one case where deadly force was used unnecessarily because the officer felt his female partner could not help him.

Others, however, believe that if women were physically unprepared for the job, one of them would have been hurt on the streets long ago.

By Lynn O’Shaughnessy Memphis Press-Scimitar staff writer – 1980.


PIONEER FEMALE OFFICER PROMOTED TO CAPTAIN

Julia ‘Claire’ Lester, among the first 10 women to join the Memphis Police Department and now in charge of officers assigned to City Court has been promoted to captain.

 She was promoted Thursday on her 30th anniversary on the force.

 “It has really been an interesting career,” she said.  “I have learned a lot…especially from the seasoned officers.”

Learning from her has been her daughter, Julie Barrow, who has been a police officer for 15 years and is assigned to Central High School and Bellevue Junior High School.

The captain, 56, began as a traffic officer in 1958.  Of the first 10 women hired as police officers, she’s the only one still on the job.

She also has worked as a detective on the vice, sex crimes and larceny squads, and as a lieutenant in charge of a uniformed patrol shift and also of a precinct detective bureau.

She will continue her assignment of the past 31/2 years in the City Court.  Capt. Joanne Moore is the only other female captain.

Being a woman in the police department hasn’t always been easy she said. 

“There were a lot of hurdles to cross,” she said.  “But I’ve learned a lot from the men on the Police Department.”

Now, she said, here fellow officers have less trouble accepting women as colleagues.

“Sometimes it has been hard for women,” she said, “but most of that has changed.  Women have good opportunities in the department now.”

By Barbara A. Burch – Commercial Appeal staff reporter  3/20/88.


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