Those who want to devote their spare time to making St. Lucie County safer are asked to volunteer their time as members of the Citizens Observation Patrol (“C.O.P.” for short), according to St. Lucie County Sheriff Ken J. Mascara.
“Once you’re accepted into the program, you will undergo a 16-hour training class, then patrol your neighborhood or other communities throughout St. Lucie County,” Sheriff Mascara said. Volunteers must be at least 21 years of age.
C.O.P. volunteers patrol in several districts throughout the county, including county parks or waters of St. Lucie County. The Sheriff's Office provides patrol vehicles.
“C.O.P. volunteers fight crime by observing and reporting possible criminal activity to the 9-1-1 Emergency Operations Center,” Sheriff Mascara said. “We do not ask C.O.P. volunteers to endanger their safety. We do ask them to observe and report crime. Deputies will do the rest.”
C.O.P. volunteers also assist the Sheriff’s Crime Prevention Unit with the St. Lucie County Fair and training for other types of programs that are offered to the community.
For more information or to volunteer, interested persons asked to call the Crime Prevention Unit at 871-5303.