LABELLE, FL. -- Mark your calendar for April 1, and bring your enthusiasm
and support to the State Attorney's 4th Annual Law Enforcement Appreciation
Softball Tournament. Cheer on your favorite team as law enforcement
officers from all five Southwest Florida counties gather to "play ball" at
the Lee County Sports Complex on Six Mile Cypress Parkway. Starting at 8
AM, it is a free day of fun for the family and one of camaraderie for the
Last year the Hendry County Sheriff's Office, Glades County Sheriff's
Office and Clewiston Police won the championship for the Lower Division.
The Collier County Sheriff's Office won the championship for the Upper
Local businesses sponsor each agency, and the proceeds, after expenses, go
to Crime Stoppers. This year, area merchants committed $14,000 to Crime
Stoppers, four thousand more than last year. This gives the public and the
teams a day of fun under the sun at no cost. "We are overwhelmed by the
support from the business community," says State Attorney Steve Russell.
"It not only sends a strong message of appreciation for law enforcement and
Crime Stoppers, but also this support demonstrates a commitment to keep our
communities safe." Each team will play a minimum of two games using all
four fields. The games will conclude at dusk.
Russell started the tournament his first year in office to show
appreciation to the law enforcement officers
who dedicate their lives to protecting the citizens of Southwest Florida.
In 2003, there were fewer than 200 participants. This year, there are
close to 400 law enforcement officers "playing ball."