Two former BRPD police chiefs host free safety classes for students

After multiple requests for safety classes, two former Baton Rouge Police chiefs are stepping up and offering free classes for college students.

“Everyone is welcome but we are concentrating on young ladies. We have a ballroom set aside for the two dates and it holds up to 150 people,” said former BRPD Chief Greg Phares.

Wife of fallen EBRSO’s Brad Garafola, Tonja Garafola, & former BRPD Police Chief Pat Englade teaching a recent safety class

Phares and Pat Englade’s focus for the program is to provide “female college students with knowledge to decrease their chances of being victimized by violent crime.”

The students will learn the importance of situational awareness along with methods of detecting and avoiding potentially dangerous encounters. Specific concerns related to college campus life and the surrounding community will also be addressed.

“We want to give something back to our city where we policed for many years,” said Chief Englade. “There has never been a more crucial time in Baton Rouge’s history where have we seen the almost daily taking of young people’s lives. Someone has to do something!”

Attendees will also get lessons in Jiu Jitsu and first-degree black belt in the case a person needs to escape a violent encounter.

The safety classes will be offered on Feb. 2nd and 15th at the Catholic Life Center ballroom at 1800 S. Acadian Thruway from 6-8pm. The classes are free and there’s no need for any sign-up. Anyone is welcome.

The need for classes comes after the recent rape and death of LSU student Madison Brooks. Prior to that was the killing of Southern student Courtney Hughes, who was in New Orleans when she was shot. In Sept. 2022, LSU student Allie Rice was shot and killed on Government St. in Baton Rouge, whose murder has yet to be solved.

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