PITTSBURG — LaMour Romine, a detective with the Pittsburg Police Department, keeps journals for her daughters — Kember, who will turn 2 next month, and Devryn Scarlett, whom she is expecting in August — in case something were to happen to her in her dangerous line of work.
“I always think, you know, if I was in their position, or if I had lost my mother, what would I have wanted from her?” Romine said.
Romine, the youngest of four children, was born in Kingman, Ariz., where she lived until she was 7 or 7 years old. She then lived in Colorado until she was a teenager and moved to Kansas while in high school.
She later moved to Pittsburg to attend college, eventually graduating with a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a minor in psychology from Pittsburg State University in 2010. Since then Romine has been working for the Pittsburg Police Department.
Romine also earned an associate’s degree in criminal justice, and returned to school in 2014 to earn a master of business administration degree. She aspires to teach criminal justice at the college level, but the birth of her first daughter meant it will still be some time before she reaches that goal, although that was also something she factored into her plans.
“I felt like LaMour 10 years from now would be too tired to go to school to try to get that degree to teach, so I said: ‘OK, right now while I’m young and motivated. I’m going to get that degree, but for the intention to teach later,’” Romine said.
In 2016, she moved from being a regular police officer working the streets of Pittsburg to focusing on internet crime, and in 2017 officially became a detective specializing in crimes against children, though she works other cases as well.
Romine works not only with the Pittsburg Police Department, but frequently with other organizations including the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, and even the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
“You might have a suspect who lives in Chicago who just reached multiple girls throughout the U.S. and one of them happened to be in Pittsburg,” Romine said. “In a way it is rewarding, but it’s also emotionally draining in a way because you see all these things happen and you want to help them but you remember ‘OK, this is just my one little part of the whole big picture of what is actually going on in the internet world.’”
Though she dealt with criminals and dangerous situations working as a police officer earlier in her career, she has gained a new perspective since having children of her own.
Because of the dangers of her job, she began keeping journals for her daughters. Topics of Romine’s journals include her own life and what she has gone through “to help them understand me and things that I hope that they would understand as they get older in the event that something does happen to me,” she said. “I just think it’s important to maintain that emotional health and balance,” Romine said “and, you know, cherish every moment that you’ve got when you’ve got it.”