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City promotes three officers, approves CodeRED
From left: Raymond Fowler, Jack Frost and Brad Sykes of the Richmond Hill Police Department were recognized for their promotions at Tuesday night's city council meeting. - photo by Photo courtesy of the RHPD

The city of Richmond Hill recognized the promotions of three police officers and approved an emergency notification system at Tuesday night’s city council meeting.

Raymond Fowler and Jack Frost, both 17-year veterans of the RHPD, were promoted to the rank of captain, while Brad Sykes, who has been with the department for seven years, was promoted to lieutenant.

Each officer’s wife took part in the pinning ceremony, placing their husbands’ new badges on them.

“We’re fortunate that we have a lot of support from our community, the city council and the city administration, but in the line of work we do, our support system begins at home,” Chief Mitch Shores said.

Fowler will now head up the department’s patrol division, while Frost will oversee criminal investigations and Sykes will be in charge of training.

Council also approved spending about $4,000 a year on an emergency notification system known as CodeRED that would allow the city to communicate with residents through a variety of methods.

The system, created in 1998, is used by more than 3,000 municipalities in the United States and Canada and is capable of making 50,000 phone calls per hour. It can also be used to send texts, emails and social media messages.

CodeRED will only be available to city residents and people who own businesses in the city. Sign up will be through the city’s mobile phone app and should start after May 1. There is no cost to register and those who sign up can enter multiple phone numbers and email accounts

City Manager Chris Lovell said he has been in contact with Bryan County Administrator Ben Taylor about the county adapting the same system.

“Ideally, it would be beneficial to have everyone using it, especially here on the south end,” Lovell said.

Lovell noted that because of the population growth in South Bryan County that is occurring outside the city limits, the goal is to be able to notify non-residents who travel through the city on a regular basis.

Some of the uses for CodeRED include weather advisories, missing person notifications, evacuations and lockdowns, Amber Alerts, street closures and water emergencies.

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