Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Hello, Officer the City Is Doing Right with Neighborhood Beats

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Hello, Officer the City Is Doing Right with Neighborhood Beats

Article excerpt

Walking the beat" is an old-fashioned way for police to carry out their duties, and it still works. In this era of officers in cars fitted with high-tech equipment, police departments have lost the importance of getting out on foot in neighborhoods, getting to know residents and being a trusted presence in areas where crime may happen.

So we were encouraged to see the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police deploy 16 new neighborhood resource officers in recent days. Each officer is assigned to a specific neighborhood and spends all of his or her time there. Regular patrol officers can be required to cover as many as a dozen neighborhoods in one shift, but the resource officers concentrate their efforts in one smaller area.

For example, one officer is assigned to the East Allegheny neighborhood on the North Side. After realizing that an alley called Virgin Way was attracting drug users, he walked through four or five times a day for a month, making arrests, urging loiterers to leave and issuing citations. …

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