The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

A new sheriff in town

Officer Joe Peebles takes on the job of the new school resource officer
Parker Nolan
School resource officer Joe Peebles recently replaced Mark Mitchell.

Many students have noticed a new face on campus. School Resource Officer Joe Peebles has replaced former SRO Mark Mitchell, and though he’s new to the school district, he is a security veteran, with nearly 12 years of experience with the Collin County Sheriff’s office.

“This is more of a different type of law enforcement,” Peebles said. “For the past, at least six, years, I’ve been working on graveyard shift, which was from 10 o’clock at night to 7 o’clock in the morning. [That] was my regular patrol. So the people and things I dealt with at 2 or 3 o’clock in the morning is a lot different than things that we deal with here, or even crimes that you deal with in the daylight.”

Peebles’ interest in an SRO position led him to the district when Mitchell’s spot opened up.

“Working at night put a lot of stress on not only me, but my family, just because of the odd hours,” Peebles said. “It’s really hard to sleep during the day, your body just doesn’t naturally adjust to that.”

As SRO, Peebles is responsible for the security of the entire district, describing himself as the “lifeline” of any of the six schools in case of an emergency situation.

“Any time a crime happens, I’m responsible for taking the necessary actions that need to be taken, just overall security of the buildings,” Peebles said. “My main role is not for student disciplinary stuff, that’s what the principal and assistant principals are for. My main role is crime prevention, and to have law enforcement in the school in case something [happens].”

The administration is hopeful that students will be able to build constructive relationships with the new SRO.

“[Officer Mitchell] did a really good job establishing relationships with the students to the point where students trusted him and they didn’t see him as somebody who just was looking to find problems,” assistant principal Bruce Coachman said. “He was looking to find solutions. He enjoyed being at Lovejoy very much. Our expectations for our SROs are that they’re visible, they help us monitor students, and with security and at our events. They help with the safety and security of the building.”

Peebles wants to make his purpose on campus clear.

“The students need to realize that I have a specific job to do here,” Peebles said. “I’m here to help everybody that I can with anything that I can, but I do have a specific job here.”

Peebles expects that his work as an SRO will be beneficial, both on an individual and on a community level.

“So this has been a good experience so far,” Peebles said. “It’s teaching me a lot of patience that I didn’t necessarily have, because of working nights, you don’t have the luxury to have a lot of patience with the people you deal with then. And I get to be around kids all day, and I get to be around my kids at night. So that’s something that I haven’t gotten to do in a long time. So it works out for the best.”

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About the Contributor
Parker Nolan, Section Editor
Senior Parker Nolan joined The Red Ledger in ninth grade and is now the paper’s Multimedia Editor. His hobbies include making music, photography, and borderline dangerous escapades (some consider him an adrenaline junkie). Parker is currently dual enrolled at Collin College for Emergency Medical Services education to become an EMT. His favorite movie is “The Italian Job,” and his favorite genres of music are alternative rock and rap. "Be the change you want to see in the world,” a quote from Mahatma Gandhi, is a phrase that Parker tries to live his life by. In his spare time, Parker enjoys working out, hanging with friends, and exploding fireworks. Parker can be described as sometimes chill, sometimes adrenaline filled, and a little too confident in his abilities.

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