MARLIN, TX — After months without a full-time police chief, the City of Marlin tonight swore in a new leader with a mandate for change.
Marlin ended an entire season without a full-time police chief Tuesday night, swearing-in former Dallas County Precinct 1 Constable Lawrence McCall.
"Marlin is a place, I know, that needs leadership" he explained.
McCall knows the town's history, which includes a city manager who mandated writing more tickets to bolster the budget and a former police chief who was investigated for sexual assault.
Still, people in Marlin say he'll have a learning curve.
"I think it's going to be a learning experience for him to get used to everything the way it happens around here," said Helen Hunt of Marlin.
But bottom line, McCall comes to the job on the same page as his city council, a page with the word transparency at the top.
"I believe I'm here to help. I know I'm here to help and all they have to do is let me know what the problem is, and we will handle it," he said.
The new chief comes with a mandate to implement community policing by making officers more visible in town, along with new youth programs putting police and young people together for positive reinforcement.
McCall plans to introduce his own life mentoring brand teaching young people to live their future every day.
”Keeping 'em active, keeping their mind going, giving them the opportunity that they can see people, to touch people and understand what's really going on in the world ... I deal in reality,” said the new chief.
People in Marlin look forward to a more proactive police approach, especially when it comes to teenagers.
"Well, it'll get the kids off of the streets that they could be doing something constructive with police supervision," said Hunt.
And McCall says the change starts now.
"So help me God.... So help me God," he said.
McCall says his door will remain open to all, and he even took charge of the department's new Facebook page.