The heart of a police department is its daily patrol function.
This is where the vast majority of the public first meets an officer. Patrol Officers interact with the public in a variety of ways, have numerous assignments, and protect the residents and guests of our community. The Sylvania Township Police Department has 44 sworn police officers, and 29 of those officers are assigned to the daily patrol function. During a standard patrol shift, there is a Sergeant and a minimum of four patrol officers on duty. Each officer is assigned a specific portion of Sylvania Township to patrol. The Township is divided into four patrol districts.
So how does a normal shift progress for the patrol officer? The shift begins with a meeting. This meeting is called “roll call”, and it is led by the Sergeant in charge of the shift. The Sergeant goes over recent crimes in the Township, assigns patrol districts, discusses legal updates, conducts training, and gives patrol assignments.
After roll call, the patrol officer assembles the equipment they need for the upcoming shift. Most officers head for a patrol cruiser and gather their gear. Some patrol officers may have unique assignments. Depending on the need, patrol officers may be assigned to traffic enforcement cars, or plain clothes and undercover cars. Once a patrol officer has their equipment, they head to their assigned district in the Township. During the shift, they’ll respond to calls for service (reports, accidents, disturbances), check houses whose residents are on vacation, respond to alarms, pay attention to problem areas, conduct traffic stops, and help where needed.
The shift ends with the patrol officer preparing their vehicle for the next shift. They finish up their paperwork, update the oncoming shift, and head home!