• Name of Officer:  Gabriel Downs.
  • Education:  Associates Degree in Criminal Justice from Kilgore College (1996).
  • Hometown:  Gilmer, TX.
  • Prior job experience if any:  Gilmer PD reserve officer; Upshur County Sheriff’s Department jailer; Upshur County Sheriff’s Department patrol deputy; East Mountain PD officer.
  • How do you feel when you put on your uniform each day?  Proud!  I always wanted to be a police officer, especially a Longview Police Officer, so that badge and uniform mean a lot.  My uniform the last few years has been plain clothes.  I became a property crimes detective in 2015.  I still wear the LPD badge proudly, I just don’t have to wear the Batman belt and vest every day. 
  • People don’t often understand how hard police officers work to keep citizens safe, what inspired, you to become a protector of the community and can you tell us if any daily risks you’ve seen or experienced.  Growing up as a child I would see police officers and knew that they were there to keep people safe.  I wanted to be able to give that sense of security and safety to people.
  •  What is a misconception you have seen that the public have about the Police?  Cases don’t get solved in an hour like on TV.  Many cases we deal with have to have evidence processed and that process takes much longer than an hour.  DNA results in an hour… I don’t think so, but it would be nice.
  • As a Police officer, what do you want your legacy to be? In the words of Casting Crowns “I don’t wanna leave a legacy… only Jesus!”  If I am remembered, I hope that other officers that I have worked with and trained remember me as being the guy who was easy to work with, did a good job, and was a good image for the department.
  • What was one of your toughest days on the job?  During the most recent storms we had to direct traffic, and I got sunburned.  The skin on the top of my head started peeling and I was in pain.  The citizens of Longview made it better though.  We had several people stop to bring us cold drinks and food.
  • How does your family feel about you being a police officer?  I know they didn’t like me on patrol in the uniform everyday because of all of the violence toward the police that happens.  As a detective, they are more at ease because a lot of my time is spent in an office and in plain clothes. 
  • Police officers work long hours and the work is very stressful, how do you like to relax?  Anyone who knows me knows the answer to this…. TEXAS RANGERS.  I love baseball and the Rangers are my team.  My beautiful wife Stephanie and I watch them on TV and try to go to a few games each year.  I know this may sound weird, but I also like to mow my yard which I always say is my stress relief. 
  • If you could go back in time and tell your younger self one thing what would it be?  Slow down.  Time goes by too fast, enjoy every moment.
  • In a time when pop culture encourages not co-operating with police officers, can you expand on the dangers this causes?  When people don’t co-operate, it makes the job that much harder and more dangerous for the police and the community.
  • As a champion of the community and symbol of justice how can we as a community better support the police?  Don’t teach kids “that police man is going to arrest you!”  We want people, kids especially, to feel safe and that they can come to us if there is a problem. 
  • Do policemen really like donuts?  I would say most do, but I prefer a ham and cheese kolachie!  I’m pretty sure that I have seen firemen also eat donuts… just saying.
  • Do you think the Cowboys have a shot at the Super Bowl and why?   Of course, they do, just like my Rangers have a chance to win the World Series!  Win or lose I’ll be watching.