The Citizen Observation Patrol program is an important part of the Sheriff’s Crime Prevention Unit encompassing over 300 volunteers in Community, District, Parks Patrol, and Marine Units. District 9 C. O. P. volunteers work as eyes and ears for the SLC Sheriff’s Office and FPPD, covering the area from South Bridge to Blind Creek North County Park.
We started the year with ten members, recruited and trained two new members, lost our longest serving member who passed away, and lost one member due to resignation, leaving us back at ten at the end of the year. We are all residents of the community.
Our dedicated volunteers donated 1261.3 hours during the year, our third consecutive record year for volunteer hours. They worked 424 patrol shifts, driving 11,254 miles, on 339 days during the year.
While on patrol, the members requested law enforcement response 71 times thru 911 and handled 139 other situations directly or with the support of law enforcement officers in the area that could be contacted directly for assistance. They also handled 470 citizen flag downs or contacts for complaints, assistance, directions or information. And, over 70 Crime Opportunity Notices were left for, or personally delivered to, owners of valuables left in plain sight unattended and readily available for theft. I sometimes call them unintended gifts rather than thefts. Lock your valuables!!
More community residents took advantage of the free House Watch service of the District this year and volunteers made 126 full walk around inspections and 231 close patrol visits of enrolled properties during owner absences. During these patrols, suspicious activity and/or unauthorized persons on the property were identified at least six times and dealt with.
Members of our group also contributed a substantial number of additional volunteer hours to the C. O. P. Marine Unit, assisting Deputies in the courthouse, working on projects for the Sheriff’s Crime Prevention Unit, and working as communication and education links to the community and performing other duties as FPPD Ambassadors.
We are proud of the benefits we believe we offer to crime prevention awareness, personal and property safety and security, and as representatives of the community to the huge number of tri-county, national and international seasonal visitors with whom we often have contact.
We are always looking for new volunteers. We are looking for men or women, year around or seasonal, with valid driver licenses, willingness to undergo a simple background check and attend 16 hours of classroom training and about three hours of field training, and ability to contribute 8 – 10 hours a month on schedules convenient to them to help protect our community. If you are interested in exploring participation, please call the Sheriff’s Crime Prevention Unit at 772-871-5303 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain application forms and training schedules.
I want to send you my personal thanks and the thanks of my team members for your friendship, support, smiles and waves. That is what keeps volunteers volunteering. You make it worthwhile.
Bruce A. Murray
Leader – C. O. P. District 9