Michigan State Police troopers bring safety message to Flint elementary schools

May 8, 2013

About 20 Michigan State Troopers are spending the next few days meeting with Flint schoolchildren.

Michigan State Police Colonel Kriste Kibbey Etue told a student assembly today at Bryant Elementary in Flint that she would like to see them waving at Michigan State Police patrol cars as they drive through their neighborhood.

“Because it really kind of hurts our feelings when our car goes by and no one waves at us,” Etue told the students.

One student blurted out “We be scared”, which drew laughter from the students.

But Etue says their fear is a problem.

“Our goal is is to let these kids know that law enforcement is here to help you,” says Etue,  “The little girl’s comment that we’re afraid of you….that’s why we have to be in the schools more. You shouldn’t be fearing law enforcement.”

State troopers have become more visible in Flint in recent years.

More than two dozen troopers have been brought in to assist the Flint police department with the city’s crime problem.

Etue hopes to expand the state police's TEAM (Teaching, Educating and Mentoring) program to more schools in Michigan.  She says they are looking at holding similar events in Detroit, Saginaw and other school districts.