Bike patrols are becoming more important in SPD operations, East Precinct Capt. Jim Dermody told Capitol Hill Seattle. Turns out, bikes are better suited for policing in more dense areas:
“[The squad] covers a lot of the area you’d like to cover,” Dermody said. He said one of the biggest values is simply visibility of his police force on the streets but he also added that the bike cops excel in areas of community outreach and what Dermody called ‘problem solving’ — basically, the ability to better react to situations encountered in a dense, urban environment. Dermody said the bikers are also important for the increasing number of public events in the East Precinct — both what he called community events and “free speech” events, also known as protests.
Bike cops are also more cost efficient. Read the rest of the story, which includes some SPD bike cop history, too (did you know they started when the downtown transit tunnel went in?).
This reminds me of our big scoop months ago about SPD’s hip new fixie patrol...
Tom is a contributor to SeattleCrime and editor of Seattle Bike Blog, where a similar story ran earlier.