patrol debuts at W.Va. Capitol campus
Police also recruiting certified law enforcement
W.Va. – People who visit or work at the West Virginia Capitol
Complex have a new resource for help and information, with the launch of
regular bike patrols by the Division of Protective Services.
Seven officers with the agency, also known
as the Capitol Police, recently completed 40 hours of training to serve on this
unit. Bicycle patrols enhance mobility, visibility and response time, allowing
for improved interaction with the public. This proactive approach benefits not
only the 18-acre Capitol campus, but also other state government properties in
Charleston and the neighborhoods in between.
As a certified law enforcement agency, the
Capitol Police has jurisdiction throughout Kanawha County, noted Protective
Services Director Kevin Foreman.
“We provide services to communities and
individuals residing in areas throughout Charleston while conducting checks on
state government properties,” Foreman said. “The bike patrol reflects a
collaborative effort that provides a significant service while utilizing
minimal taxpayer dollars.”
The Capitol Police was provided bicycle
patrol training from certified trainers at the Parkersburg Police Department.
It also received assistance from the Saint Albans and Charleston Police
Departments, which provided alternative bicycles and parts to help equip the unit.
“We’ve had a great response from Capitol
employees and the community already,” said Cpl. Patrick Sparks, the unit’s
leader. “A couple of our guys have a made arrests due to community involvement.
We’ve found that our people are a lot more approachable on the bike then in
Bike patrol officers wear distinctive
yellow and black uniforms. Besides the Capitol Complex, the unit patrols around
the Department of Environmental Protection headquarters in Kanawha City and
offices for the Department of Health and Human Resources and other state
Director Foreman believes the bike patrol
will provide another avenue of safety for individuals who work and visit the
Capitol complex, and allow the Division the opportunity to provide a more
Protective Services currently has several
vacancies among its 31 officer positions. Interested certified officers can
contact the agency at (304) 558-9911.