• Printer Friendly VersionRIDE-A-LONGS  

    Requests to participate in the Observer program are received from individuals desiring to learn more about police activities through observation.  Riding as an Observer often provides individuals with more knowledge concerning the nature of police work and the community being served; especially to those who have had minimal exposure to policing. 

    Active participation by individuals in the Observer Program is of educational value to participants and to the Police Department.  Applicants will be approved for participation if their background is deemed satisfactory, a Civilian Observer Release, Waiver and Covenant Not to Sue is signed, their objectives are compatible with those of the Department, and they appear to be physically and mentally capable of coping with potentially hazardous law enforcement situations. 



    • The following procedures shall govern this program: 
    • Applicants for this program must be a minimum of 18 years of age. 
    • A written request is required from the applicant requesting to participate, including the preferred date and hours requested.  There is a seven (7) day waiting period for all requests. 
    • When a person requests to participate in this program, the District Commander or designee of the District the observer has requested to ride in, shall conduct a records check to ensure the applicant does not have any outstanding warrants or has a criminal record that would disqualify him. 
    • After the records check, the applicant shall be interviewed by the affected District Commander who will evaluate the applicants fitness to participate in the program.  Applicants may be refused participation if in the opinion of the District Commander, the applicants presence may compromise officer safety. 
    • Approval rests with the District Commander.  Upon approval, the applicant shall sign a Civilian Observer Release, Waiver and Covenant Not to Sue (See Form 094-A). 
    • All paper work shall be forwarded to the Support Services Division for retention. 
    • Observers may ride a maximum of two (2) times in any twelve (12) month period.  Exceptions may be granted by the Chief of Police. 
    • No observer shall be allowed to carry a firearm and/or other weapon.  This does not apply to law enforcement officers from other agencies. 
    • Observers will NOT drive any Department vehicle, handle evidence or property, use the police radio, handle any Department firearm or other weapon (ASP, Baton, Pepper Spray, etc.), or interact with victims, suspects, or prisoners. 
    • Observers will not be permitted to ride with probationary officers. 
    • Observers will not be permitted to participate or be present at or during the execution of search or arrest warrants unless written consent is provided by the legal owner(s) of the private property (residence). 
    • Participation may be terminated by the officer at any time if the observer fails to follow the restrictions set forth or the officer believes his safety is compromised.  A supervisor may terminate a ride along at any time should conditions dictate. 
    • Observers shall be dressed in business attire with closed toe type footwear.  Jean type pants, shorts, hats of any kind, tank tops, halter tops, or open toe shoes or sandals are not acceptable. 
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