Yakima Police pull out the bikes for a possible new patrol
September 6, 2012 -
YAKIMA, Wash. - The Yakima Police Department is launching a bike patrol program for the "First Friday" event on Friday night, September 7th. One of the key findings of the 2012 Yakima Citizen Survey was that residents don't feel as safe as they would like to in the downtown area, particularly after dark, so as a result officers are trying out the program.
The bike patrol will include two YPD officers, and city council says the City Manager, Tony O'Rourke also plans
to tag along with the bike patrol officers for part of the evening.
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the YPD operated a bike patrol unit which specifically focused on the downtown area. The unit was particularly effective in stemming criminal activity related to drugs that was going on in Downtown Yakima at the time. The YPD bike patrol unit was disbanded several years ago due to a shift in focus by the department coupled with a lack of funding.
The renewed bike patrol will likely also be at another First Friday event later this fall, and if the program is successful, it could return as a regular service in spring of 2013.