Mayor Ron Nirenberg joined the San Antonio Police Department for two days to experience what officers deal with on a daily basis.
"They have challenging jobs so I wanted to get to know their jobs from their perspective as we go into the budget season and the rest of the work that we do here at the City of San Antonio," Mayor Nirenberg said.
On Monday, the mayor took a helicopter ride in the SAPD E.A.G.L.E., where he learned about the technology officers use to track down criminals.
"They can go above cell range. They can go above visibility and can still be looking down at a license plate," Mayor Nirenberg described. "Another thing that San Antonio should be very proud of is the fact that we have the first and only female pilot flying helicopters in any police department in Texas. It's pretty cool. Kathy O'Connor got to visit with us before we went up in the E.A.G.LE."
On Tuesday, he hit the streets with SAPD's Street Crimes Unit. They focused on downtown and the east side area. He rode with officer Zeke Holguin, a five-year veteran of the department.
"We have people in our community who do some of the toughest jobs, in this case wearing the San Antonio Police Department badge, and he's doing it because he loves his neighborhood. He loves his community. He loves the neighborhoods that he patrols," Mayor Nirenberg said. "The difficult work, more often than not, does not involve a weapon, does not involve a badge, doesn't even involve driving a car. It's about getting to know people.”
The mayor also emphasized the importance of community policing to help reduce and stop the illegal drug trade.
On Wednesday night, SAPD Chief William McManus joined Mayor Nirenberg for a Facebook Live where they discussed the ride-along experience and answered public safety questions.
You can watch that broadcast here: