Photo: Sergeant Steve Perret and Inspector Pat Egan present to City Council Monday – Sean Assor/Energeticcity.ca
CORRECTION- The Bike Patrol Unit is not guaranteed to return to the city this season. Priorities to reduce crime must be discussed between RCMP and City Council before decisions are to be made.
Local police officers will be exposed to plenty of fresh air this summer.
A select group of Fort St. John police officers will be assigned to a local bicycle patrol unit, monitoring our streets on a regular basis. The idea took to action last summer and has received nothing but praise from City Council and the general pubic.
Present at Monday’s City Council meeting were Sergeant Steve Perret and Inspector Pat Egan, who were gracious for the opportunity to present their case for the summer Bike Patrol.
The officers explained multiple benefits to having such a unit and even listed other important aspects that one may not assume would be involved with police patrolling an area on bicycles.
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Although, spotting and preventing crime is only part of the RCMP Bike Patrol’s job description. Also involved in the program, is an idea known as positive tickets. The idea involved children being rewarded by officers for display of proper bike safety, including proper use of helmets and cycling and skating in a safe manner. The idea has received tremendous positive feedback from parents, City Council as well as the youth themselves.
One specific area in which the bike patrol monitors closely is the downtown area and the Fort St. John skate park. These two areas are notorious for certain criminal activity and there has been noticeable reduction in crimes since the creation of the RCMP Bike Patrol.
Councilor Ackerman had especially positive feedback towards the Program.
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After noticeable results and an immense amount of praise received from the town, it is clear that the RCMP Bike Patrol will be reporting for duty for yet another season.
Whether more police officers will be assigned to the unit is yet to be determined. However, what is known is that the need for such a patrol unit is necessary and more importantly, is encouraged.