OVILLA – With the city of Ovilla’s crime rate in the year 2010 at only nine per 1,000 population and extremely low, there might not be a better time for Ovilla Chief of Police Mike Moon to head to the FBI National Academy on the East Coast.

“Another phenomenal stat was our clearance rate,” Moon said. “For 2010, our crimes clearance rate was 68.7 percent. This means that 68.7 percent of our crimes were cleared by arrests. This includes crimes against persons and property. Most police departments would be proud of a 25 percent clearance rate.”

So, with this kind of record Moon leaves his post March 30 to return after FBI Academy graduation June 10.

On someone taking his place during his absence, he said, “I leave it in the capable hands of Lt. Mollie Dox.”

Dox, who has been a police officer for 20 years, worked in Nacogdoches, Texas, as well as for the Cedar Hill Police Department, where Moon met her. She was also a Dallas County DA investigator and has been with the Ovilla Police Department for seven years.

But, while Moon might be gone, he won’t be forgotten or forget about Ovilla, adding that he will have his city issued cell phone, laptop computer and email at the ready.

“I should be very accessible to anyone at the police department or city hall that needs to communicate with me,” Moon said. “I plan to check in with Lt. Dox on a daily basis to ensure she is not having any problems and to keep up with the happenings of the department and the city.”

While at the FBI National Academy, Moon will take six different law enforcement-related subjects, all of which he says will be beneficial to the police department and to the city government in making for a more well-rounded law enforcement administrator. Examples of the classes Moon will attend are labor law for law enforcement, computer forensics and murder investigations for administrators.

“The national academy is a like a college semester where attendees get to choose the subjects they wish to take,” Moon said. “I continue to get told that one of the biggest benefits that participates receive from the national academy is the networking and the contacts. I plan to take full advantage of this to attempt to pick up ideas from administrators from other police department, both here in the U.S. and across the world. The academy has students from other parts of the world also.”

Moon, whose law enforcement career spans 35 years, started out as an MP in the Army, then worked in Brownfield, Texas, and Cedar Hill, Texas, from where he retired, before becoming police chief in Ovilla eight years ago.

The acceptance process for the FBI National Academy is about two years or more and Moon said only about 1 percent of the nation’s police officers are chosen to attend.

“This past October, one of my friends who is an agent, called and asked me if I wanted to attend the FBI-NA. I thought he was joking because that is like asking someone if they want to win the lottery,” he said. “I am not sure why I was chosen to receive this honor and to be handed this opportunity on a silver platter, but I will be forever grateful and will not take this opportunity for granted.”

Moon is also taking, as part of his time at the academy, his two weeks’ vacation to compensate for his missed time.