The Houston Police Department has an Explorer Program for young
adult’s ages 14-21 years old. This program is a mentor program to teach
young people life skills and policing in today’s society.
The Westside Station’s Explorer program has been in operation for
almost eight years and is run by Officers M. Prause, L. Chaney, K.
Martinez and C. Pocasangre.
Westside’s Post currently has 16 young adults actively participating.
Most of the Westside Explorers are from the Alief area. The Explorer
program has a chain of command that closely resembles HPD. There is one
Explorer commander, one Explorer lieutenant, two Explorer sergeants and
12 Explorers in two “squads.”
Six past members of the Westside Post are now Houston police officers
and one past member is a Harris County deputy. Nineteen past members
are in the United States Military (Including one cctive member of the
Post currently on deployment in Guatemala with the United States Air
Force. This member is also in the Background Investigation Unit of the
HPD application process.
The Explorer program does scenario-based training on real police-type
calls. The Explorers not only learn police skills, but they also
compete against other Explorer teams throughout the state and country.
Explorers also serve their communities by completing numerous community
In April, the Westside Explorers went to a competition in Fort Worth,
where they competed against other Explorer chapters from throughout
Texas. Other departments represented at the competition were Arlington
PD, Beaumont PD, Bedford PD, Burleson PD, Chambers County SO, Grand
Prairie PD, Plano PD, Richardson PD and Tomball PD.
At this competition, the HPD Westside Explorers won first place in
Overall Team. The team also took first in “Robbery Investigations,”
“Arrest, Search and Seizures,” “Domestic Violence” and “Active Shooter.”
The team won second place in “CIT Investigations,” “Misdemeanor
Traffic Stops” and “Burglary Investigations” and took third in “Felony
Traffic Stops” and “Officer Down scenarios.”