By Everett Brazil, III
The Newkirk Herald Journal
NEWKIRK — Kevin Main has dedicated his life to protecting and promoting the public safety of the community through different law enforcement organizations across the region, including his native Kay County. He now has the safety of Newkirk in mind, as he was recently promoted to Chief of Police, and looks forward to helping decrease crime in the community.
Main was promoted at the Dec. 28 city commission hearing in a unanimous vote. Main replaces former Chief Nolan Tattershall, who resigned Nov. 1.
Main was raised in Ponca City, and it was there that he first gained an interest in law enforcement.
“I started when I was 14 years old,” he said. “Ponca City had an explorer program, and that is how I got interested in law enforcement.”
He quickly knew it was something in which he was interested.
“Once I got a taste of it, I knew that’s what I wanted to do,” he said.
He also had seen the wrong side of the law through fellow friends, and wished to protect the innocent instead.
“I have seen too many friends on the wrong side of law enforcement, and I didn’t want to be that,” he said
Main has 29 years worth of law enforcement experience, starting in Fairfax, as well as serving as for the Osage and Pawnee county sheriffs’ offices. He worked as a police officer from 2003 – 2010, when he served at the Kay County Detention Center.
Through his many years in law enforcement, he has undergone much training, including through the CLEET program, or Council on Law Enforcement and Training. He has completed more than 1,400 hours of continued education, and is a current CLEET instructor. Most recently he was appointed to the CLEET advisory council.
The NPD sees a lot of the same crimes as their urban counterparts, just at a lower level due to population.
“We see the same things the big cities do, just not as many (cases) or as often as big cities do,” he said.
Theft and domestic crime seem to be high on their radar, but some acts may be decreasing.
“It doesn’t seem we have as big of a juvenile problem as we used to,” he said.
Drugs are a recurring problem, as well, though the demographics have shifted.
“To me, it doesn’t seem as problematic as before, because we don’t have our (methamphetamine) cooks, as it is being brought in,” he said.
Main enjoys being a law enforcement officer in a small town because of the ability to make connections, a way to build trust in the community.
“I like being able to help my fellow neighbors, seeing a result in having a change in the community,” he said.
One way he wants to see change in the community is through the youth and the schools.
“My focus is on our kids, our schools,” he said. “I want to make sure we have a future, safety for our kids.”
City leaders are confident in his abilities to lead the NPD into the future.
“I think that he is a great officer and great asset for the city to have, with many years in law enforcement,” City Manager Ryan Smykil said. “I’m very happy to have him as our police chief.”
For Main, it is simply public safety that draws him to his job.
“I like the hometown feel getting to know the people, being available in the community,” he said. “This is one of my goals to be a police chief.”