By Ariel Worthy
The Birmingham Times
After months of financial turmoil, the city of Brighton has received help with the purchase of two new police cars.
The financially-strapped city received $6,000 from Frank Barefield, chairman of Crime Stoppers of Metro Alabama to acquire two cars from Jefferson County.
“I saw on TV that the city had no police cars and [the police officers] were using their personal vehicles,” Barefield said in an interview Wednesday. “I saw the county was going to provide them with two cars, and I offered to pay for it.”
The cash comes almost three months after Brighton faced major safety problems including not enough money to fund some of its police vehicles.
“Having an officer drive his own car while on patrol is not something I could even begin to live with,” Barefield said. “When I heard what a bargain the cars were, I wanted to buy more.”
Jefferson County gave the city two cars in addition to the ones Barefield helped pay for.
Getting the cars is paramount for residents in the community, said County Commissioner Sandra Little Brown.
“The citizens need public safety around the clock and now they have four good cars,” Brown said.
With all of the issues faced in the city, four new police cars are a step in the right direction, Barefield said.
“It’s a privilege to be able to help law enforcement,” he said. “Anything I can do to help law enforcement I definitely will do; it worked out well.”
Crime Stoppers has been in operation since 1981. So far this year tips have resulted in 67 felony arrests that cleared 169 felony cases for which Crime Stoppers has authorized $50,415 in rewards.Cleared cases have included capital murder; murder; attempted murder; trafficking heroin; burglary, forgery and receiving stolen property, according to Crime Stoppers.