This month the Rapid City Police Department will introduce a new kind of officer to the citizens of Rapid City.
The RCPD recently hired two community service officers (CSOs). The new non-sworn positions were created to alleviate some of the calls for service from patrol officers, and help provide better police service to the public.
The community service officers will respond to non-emergency calls that don't require a sworn police officer. For example, CSOs will take reports on belated thefts, vandalism, car burglaries, and other property crimes. They will also control traffic at accident scenes and special events, assist with crossing guard duties, and respond to safety hazards.
"The community service officers will help free up patrol officers to focus on violent crimes, in-progress calls, and sector policing," said Chief of Police Steve Allender. "Their assistance should give patrol officers more time on the street, and allow our department to provide better customer service all around."
Since joining the department in September, the CSOs have been undergoing extensive field training alongside patrol officers. After finishing their final phase of training in mid-November, the two CSOs will be assigned to a regular patrol shift, under the supervision of a patrol sergeant.
"We're excited to have the community service officers available as a new resource for the public," Chief Allender said. "It's a win-win for our department and the community as a whole."