The Denton Police Department is seeking the public’s help in naming a new mascot for its Twitter page.
The popular blue bird that everyone has come to recognize the social media page Twitter with is now really dressed in blue.
“Many police departments are now putting the Twitter bird in their uniform and using it as their mascot,” said Officer Ryan Grelle, who heads up the department’s social media accounts.
Since earlier this month, Grelle has been asking followers on Facebook and Twitter to help come up with a name for the department’s new Twitter mascot. The mascot, modeled after the one that sits on Grelle’s desk at the police station, is an artist’s rendering from one of the department’s followers overseas.
After many submissions, Grelle said it’s now down to two names for everyone to vote on.
“We are having people vote on the name ‘Officer Denny’ or ‘Officer DoRight’ until next Tuesday, Aug. 20,” he said.
To vote, e-mail email@example.com. The winning name will be announced on the department’s Twitter page @DentonPD on Friday, Aug. 23.
Denton police are known for using the department’s social media pages for their “most wanted” arrests and helping organize this year’s global “tweet-a-thon,” with more than 100 law enforcement agencies participating across the globe.
Grelle said the department began posting photos of people with outstanding warrants two years ago, which has led to 31 arrests.
In light of leading the way in social media, Grelle was just announced this week as a finalist for the Connected Cop leadership award.
The award will be presented at the annual Social Media, the Internet and Law Enforcement conference to be conducted in Nebraska in September.
Lauri Stevens, principal of Laws Communications, said this is the second year for the awards and Denton had to compete with law enforcement agencies around the world to become a finalist.
“I created the awards because some police agencies and officers are doing great work and others just think they are,” Stevens said. “Hopefully, by showcasing the good work, others will better understand how much more they can achieve with social media.”
Grelle is up against Sgt. Christopher Cook of the Arlington Police Department and Deputy James Hart of the Sacramento County Sheriff Office for the leadership award.
Stevens said she doesn’t think officers traditionally look outside their own country for best practices and believes the awards highlight work from all over, setting a high bar in law enforcement social media practices.
MEGAN GRAY can be reached at 940-566-6885 and via Twitter at @MGrayNews.