City Police Are Honored For Cops
The Spokane Police Department beat Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue and a dozen other cities to win top awards for “Municipal Achievement” from the Association of Washington Cities.
The department won first place for its Community Oriented Policing Services, or COPS, which has 2,300 trained volunteers in 140 neighborhoods, said spokesman Dick Cottam.
Citizen volunteers assist with crime scene analysis and lift fingerprints, which saves regular officers 10,000 hours a year, Cottam said.
Volunteers also identify, photograph and remove graffiti and work in the department’s new Police Activities League, which involves sports, mentoring, homework assistance, child-feeding and art, music and science activities for youth.
The other first place award for 1997 was “Special Innovation” for the Neighborhood Observation Patrol, or NOP program.
Trained by police, pairs of NOP volunteers patrol their own neighborhoods during the night with the goal of reducing neighborhood crime.
NOP groups raise money for their equipment, including flashlights, scanners, cell phones and binoculars.