SPOKANE, Wash. -How do you keep your teens out of trouble? The summer has brought a wave of teen crime. From three different vandalism incidents, Spokane Police have arrested a total of eight kids.
However, there's a program from Spokane Police that can help these types of kids stay out of trouble. It's called the Spokane Police Activities League.
13-year-old Jamarian Mowrey takes every chance he can get to hang out with the police officers from the program. "I actually like this because I get to play basketball and football with the police," said Mowrey.
He likes them but it didn't use to be that way. Mowrey got in trouble with police before this program. He got arrested for fighting at school. "I started cursing and being disrespectful," he said.
He was originally supposed to just do 10 hours of community service, but once he found the Spokane Police Activities League, he couldn't stop coming back. That's where he met Officer DeRuwe, who watches out for him and the kids there.
"As police officers, we can't arrest our way out of crime. We're tired of arresting people over and over and over again and not seeing those results so if we can access those kids earlier or even in those teenage years, they've made a couple of bad choices, maybe there's something going on, what is beyond that? Why are they doing what they are doing? If we can figure that out, then we can work with the other resources in the community," said Officer Jennifer DeRuwe.
The program teaches the kids core values that they have to follow: respect, honesty, integrity, leadership, and sportsmanship.
For Mowrey, he says he feels like he has more in common with police than he thought. "I didn't really like them but once I got to start knowing them, I was like, they are pretty cool," he said.
The program isn't just for kids who have been in trouble with police. It's for any child who wants to join, and runs through the entire summer. There's lots of activities being offered to these kids like basketball, track, baseball, flag football, golf, and soccer. If you want to know more about the program click here.