May 8, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DEDICATION/OPENING FOR ROBERT L. SMITH PARK MAY 14,
NAMED FOR SLAIN CHARLOTTE POLICE OFFICER
Charlotte, NC-- A dedication and grand opening of Robert. L. Smith Park, 1604 Little Rock Road, in West Charlotte is set for May 14 at 11am. This park is named for a Charlotte police officer slain in the line of duty.
The dedication will occur during National Police Week. Officer Robert L. Smith was shot and killed January 15, 1987, while responding to a call of someone shooting into a condominium complex at Spyglass Place in the Pawtuckett Community, part of the old Adam-3 District. This was before City-County police consolidation. A suspect was later arrested. About 800 people attended Smith’s memorial service and more than a thousand attended his funeral. To honor his memory, fellow officers and their families tied yellow ribbons to every utility pole between the church and cemetery. This was widely covered by the news media in 1987.
Officer Smith was a seven-year veteran of the Charlotte Police Department. He was 27 years old at the time of his death. Angela Allen (Smith’s widow) and County Commissioners Jennifer Roberts and Norman Mitchell will make brief remarks at the dedication, along with Park and Recreation Commissioners Scott McClure and Brad Pearce, Park and Recreation Director Jim Garges, neighborhood activist Linda Miller, and Chief Darryl Stephens of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police.
Construction of athletic fields at the park has been delayed by drought and water restrictions. The first phase to open includes a playground, walking trail, play meadow, restrooms and parking. Three planned soccer fields will be completed when weather and water restrictions allow.
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Mike Cozza at 704-336-7693 (office) 980-722-2365 (cell) or