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Washington Voices

Loyal volunteers lead West Valley SCOPE

Thu., Aug. 11, 2011

The West Valley SCOPE (Sheriff Community Oriented Policing Effort), 3102 N. Argonne Road, has been through some changes over the years, but one thing that hasn’t changed much is the membership.

June King, president of the group, has been involved in SCOPE since 1995. So has Vice President Jan Geiger.

“We’re just dedicated,” said King, 81. “Millwood is very good to us.”

The station started on Trent Avenue in 1995. It shared office space with the SCOPE station in the East Valley area. But the groups later split, one to become the Trentwood SCOPE station and King’s group went to Millwood.

During the year, the group stays busy with West Valley Days, a carnival and parade in the local streets on the first Saturday in June.

“That’s the only fundraiser we have all year,” King said. They use the money to donate to local charities such as the Inland Northwest Honor Flight, Spokane Valley Partners, Spokane Valley Meals on Wheels, or donating barbecues and picnics tables to Millwood City Park.

“We always pick two or three things a year,” King said.

They participate in Citizens on Patrol, Operation Family ID, document graffiti, and direct traffic when needed. Some members are also commissioned to write parking tickets to any vehicle parked in a handicapped parking spot without a permit. The tickets are for $450.

“That’s the only ticket that we can write,” King said.

Millwood has a large group of Neighborhood Watches, which the SCOPE station coordinates. King said there are 74 active captains in the area.

The two women talked about some of their adventures as SCOPE volunteers. Once, a group of 22 members staked out a neighborhood to track a bandit who had been breaking into homes while the residents were at work during the day.

“By gosh, they got him,” King said.

Like other SCOPE stations, volunteers are always needed. King and Geiger said they like to keep two volunteers in the office at a time because the general pool of people is getting older.

“We need more volunteers,” King said.

“Young ones with lots of ambition,” Geiger, 80, added.

The West Valley SCOPE station has about 25 members.

“You’ve got members, but then you’ve got active members,” King said.

Geiger said she first got involved with the SCOPE station after seeing a flier inside a grocery bag. She read it and it seemed like a good idea to her.

“If we don’t take our neighborhoods back, we’re not going to have them,” she said.

For King, she had been involved in the Block Watch program for years and started out in SCOPE with her late husband, Tom.

Since then, both of these members have been very busy with SCOPE and Geiger still sells real estate as well.

Most recently, King hosted her own Night Out Against Crime potluck at her home Aug. 2, getting to know her neighbors, distributing pamphlets and cooking up the main dish for everyone. This year, she made chicken enchiladas.

They are in contact with the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office often and deputies make pit stops at the station all the time. They can complete their paperwork, use the computer or the phone and coordinate with the SCOPE members.

“We do about everything they ask us to do,” King said.

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