Crime Tracker: SPD On Foot Patrol - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Crime Tracker: SPD On Foot Patrol

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SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police are getting out of their patrol cars and working their routes on foot. Even people who usually sit behind a desk are working the foot-beat now. The saturation patrols are a new effort to get police officers, sergeants and even captains onto the street and talking to you.

At least once a week, officers will saturate a specific area. Available patrol and even people who work desk jobs will move into a specific neighborhood and introduce themselves. Sometimes those neighborhoods are hot spots that have seen an uptick in crime. Working areas downtown and under the I-90 corridor are also common places where SPD officers are enforcing their saturation patrols.

The KHQ Crime Trackers went along with officers from the downtown precinct on one of its patrols. Officer Jennifer DeRuwe with the Spokane Police Department walked for blocks armed with business cards, lists of available city resources and even a flier reminding drivers to lock up valuables when they park their car. She offered the information to people she stopped to talk to along the way.

Officer DeRuwe says, “The community members are our eyes and ears. We can go call to call all day long, but to really find out what's really bothering you, what's going on in your community, we need to have that face to face interaction.”

Businesses in downtown say they appreciate the saturation patrols and the added effort by SPD. Madeleine’s Café Employee Ben Whitney told the Crime Trackers, "People feel more welcome and more safe with them down here. I appreciate it very much so it always makes work more fun. Cleaner place, cleaner environment."

In addition to building a stronger relationship with the community, SPD says officers are also policing while they’re out on foot patrols. Officers identified a person with a warrant during a saturation patrol last week and were able to make an arrest.
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