Saturday, February 28, 2004

How to get started as a patrol



By Kevin Aldridge
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Cincinnati Police Officer Eric Franz says starting a neighborhood citizens on patrol unit is relatively simple.

"But typically it takes one or two active and dedicated citizens to get things going," Franz said. "Some of the neighborhoods just don't have them and some of them do."

Residents interested in starting their own patrol team must contact Franz or their neighborhood officer. Volunteers must be at least 18 and live within city limits.

They must undergo 20 hours of training at the Cincinnati Police Academy, which includes classroom instruction and a ride-along with police in their neighborhood. After that, Franz said that volunteers are dispatched into their neighborhood to begin patrols.

"They will have ongoing interaction with the police officers in their neighborhood, and they will have direct access to key police personnel all the way up to the chief," Franz said.

Training classes are held quarterly. One class is going on now and the next will be offered in May.

Franz said there are more than 700 citizens on patrol volunteers citywide. They conducted more than 1,500 patrols last year, he said.

For more information: 352-2989

E-mail kaldridge@enquirer.com




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