The Utah Alliance of Police Officers is conducting a legitimate fund-raising campaign by telephone, an alliance representative said on Wednesday in response to some negative press the alliance has received recently.
Darren Orr - whose South Salt Lake business, Ribeiro and Orr Enterprises, is conducting telephone solicitations for the alliance - said proceeds from the fund-raising campaign will be used for four purposes: a crime prevention program that will be distributed throughout the valley; the officers' death and disability fund; benefit programs for underprivileged children; and general office expenses.About $35,000 has been raised since June 1, Orr said.
The alliance represents more than 500 law enforcement officers in Utah, including about 20 in the Salt Lake Police Department.
Last week, the Salt Lake Police Association and the Salt Lake City Mutual Aid issued a joint press release to state that they are not connected to the alliance and do not conduct telephone solicitations. The press release also questioned the alliance's legitimacy.
But Orr said the alliance has been contributing to benefit programs for underprivileged children for the past eight years. The alliance is currently putting together a 100-page "crime prevention journal" that will be printed in December and distributed to various businesses and residences.
Orr also refuted claims by the Salt Lake police organizations that the alliance was using pressure tactics. "Our people do not imply that there will be a lack of service if they don't support our program. That would be counterproductive." He said his office has received no complaints about the solicitations.