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San Gabriel Valley Digest

Covina : Volunteer Patrol Forming

January 09, 1994

Covina officials are forming a volunteer citizens patrol to free more police officers to fight crime.

The volunteer program, approved by the City Council last week, is expected to begin in about a month. Volunteers will write handicap-parking citations, impound abandoned vehicles, assist officers with traffic control, take police vehicles for repairs and perform other routine duties.

Within six months, officials say, about 50 volunteers will be put to work. Eventually, some will serve as extra "eyes and ears" for police, patrolling the community, looking for crime and alerting officers.

The $4,000 start-up cost of the program includes uniforms, badges, hand-held two-way radios and background checks for all volunteers. Citizens who pass the background checks will receive training and be assigned four- or five-hour shifts.

Council members want the volunteer patrol to include citizens of all ages. In neighboring La Verne, West Covina and Claremont, such volunteer patrols have been designed primarily for senior citizens.

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