Archer City PD using reserve officers to reinforce staff as crime increases

ARCHER CITY, TX (KAUZ) - Archer City Police Department is looking to increase their budget to grow their staff after an increase in narcotics-related crimes that started last month.

Chief of Police Justin Perron said he using different methods to reinforce his staff while the city council works on the budget. There are currently only two full-time officers working at the department.

Autumn Weber is one of two reserve officers helping patrol the streets and slows down crime.

"Basically I consider myself a regular police officer, just not full-time," Weber said.

She is a full-time forensics teacher at Wichita Falls High School too. Like her students, she never stops learning.

She graduated top of her class at Vernon Law Enforcement Academy. She could have joined any police force in the state but chose to work at Archer City to gain experience and help her community.

She has the same authority as a regular patrol officer.

"I pull people over, I issue citations and arrest people who commit some offense," Weber said.

That kind of extra help is needed. Last month, the department had more than double the number of narcotics they had the last two June's combined.

The majority of narcotics confiscated come from Highway 79 traffic stops. The drugs fill up the evidence room.

The officers were doing inventory on Wednesday and one-fourth of the evidence filled up an entire table. That did not even include the methamphetamine they have confiscated which they give to Texas DPS.

"There are other crimes associated with [narcotics] such as burglaries, thefts or financial crimes," Chief Perron said. "A lot of it is connected with somebody trying to get their hand on some money in order to purchase some narcotics."

After the Summer break, Weber will become a full-time teacher at the new Wichita Falls Career Education Center and continue to work as a reserve officer.

Chief Perron will present his budget late August in front of Archer City City Council. He wants to add another full-time officer or start paying his reserve officers.

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