Cheyenne, WY (KGWN) - It takes awhile for the Cheyenne PD to fill its empty positions, so for the past few months they've been operating a little understaff, but Cheyenne residents are stepping up to help out.
It's called Citizens on Patrol and according to Public Information Officer Dan Long of the Cheyenne PD, "...they are actually sworn community service officers that volunteer their time to help out the Cheyenne Police Department."
Don't be alarmed though, these volunteers can't pull you over for speeding or for talking on your phone while driving. What they can do is help out officers directing traffic, they patrol school and parks after dark. They are also a huge help with issuing parking citations, especially during Frontier Days. Long says, "...as of right now we're four officers short of being fully staffed so that makes it even more important that citizens on patrol are out volunteering."
And the Cheyenne citizens who volunteer love to help out the community because when they spend their time doing seemingly trivial things, Cheyenne police officers can spend more time with the bigger stuff. Jack Coffey, a 2 year veteran of Citizens on Patrol says, "...it's very important both to the citizens of Cheyenne but mostly for the officers on the police department."
Anita Venneman, a 5 year participant in the program said that it's a wonderful program that makes her feel apart of the community.
All participants in the program do have to go through training. The Cheyenne PD offers a Citizen's Police Academy, a 10 week training program where participants take part in a weekly class to learn the ins and outs of the police department.
Dan Long says that they will be having more classes opening up soon and if you are interested in participating in the program, you can contact him at (307).637.6583 or you can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.