SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Shreveport police chaplains often show up on the scene to help heal the community when bad things happen.
They are also there for officers who often deal with the unthinkable. They are an important puzzle in trying to take back our streets.
Shreveport Police chaplain Debra Kelly says they try and pick an area where there is a need.
Kelly says it is no mistake the latest pastors on patrol prayer vigil was held right across the street from where Shreveport Officer Chatéri Payne was shot and killed.
The prayer vigil was scheduled three weeks before the officer’s death.
“It is like Commander Kimble said earlier it was a divine appointment from God," Kelly said. "He was getting our attention that something was going to happen and that we were going to need to be here for a particular reason.”
Now a month after officer Payne’s death, police chaplains are trying to heal the area with prayer, including offering fellow officers emotional support.
“We are there to remind them that there is light at the end of the tunnel and we are there,” Kelly added. They go through the trenches and they see the most horrible things throughout their shifts and I am there to be that shining light that reminds them that God loves them and that there are people in the community that loves them and supports them and who want to make sure they get home every night.”
Every month the the group holds prayer vigils all over the city. They are praying for the violence to end and for crimes to be solved.
Kelly admits it is difficult for officers to solve crimes when the community remains silent and when some in the community don’t trust police. He says the chaplains are there to try and bridge the gap and let neighbors know they have somebody they can trust.
Remember if you have information you believe will help solve a crime, call Shreveport/Caddo Crime Stoppers at 318-673-7373