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School liaison officers adjust to revamped program

(KOTA)
Published: Sep. 7, 2016 at 5:29 PM CDT
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The Rapid City Police Department has revamped its School Liaison Program just in time for the school year.

The Rapid City Police Department has added new officers to their school liaison program. The department's seven officers will now report to a single person who oversees the Patrol Division.

The officers investigate criminal matters inside schools in the Rapid City Area School District such as drug possession and theft. A lot of the work is relationship building with students to understand what problems affect their communities.

School Liaison Officers deal with criminal matters almost every day in schools across the district.

"There are days when you go throughout the day and it doesn't turn into a report, and we're thankful for those days. Then there are days when you're working through issues. Several a day with the students,” said School Liaison Officer Eric Dwyer.

After the school year is over, the liaison officers are moved to the Patrol Division and work street-side downtown on bikes. Officers are from both the police and sheriff's departments.