The Patrol Bureau is the largest division in the West Chester Police Department in terms of personnel and is the most visible in the community. The uniformed patrol officers have the responsibility for preventive patrol and to respond to calls for service from citizens, investigate traffic crashes, receive crime reports and conduct preliminary criminal investigations. Annually, officers respond to approximately 60,000 calls for service, write approximately 5,000 offense reports, and make approximately 1,700 arrests. In addition, officers write more than 4,000 traffic citations, nearly 2,500 warnings, and handle nearly 1,800 traffic crash reports. Uniformed patrol officers also assist thousands of motorists with directions, information and car breakdowns.
The Warrant Processing Section is also part of the Patrol Bureau. These officers supplement the uniformed patrol forces in the service of warrants and subpoenas. The Warrant Processing Section serves hundreds of warrants on suspects each year and assists various other units on the West Chester Police Department and other police agencies in locating suspects and making non-warrant arrests. The Warrant Processing Section maintains a Top Most Wanted list and maintains constant communication with various other agencies and courts on matters of locating suspects and serving warrants.The West Chester Police Department employs alternative methods for policing areas and events as needs arise. This might include placing officers on foot patrol or on bicycles or ATVs for close security or high visibility. It may involve the deployment of "X-cars", a unit that may be specifically dedicated to a singular mission such as traffic enforcement in high accident or complaint areas, surveillance, security, or preventive patrol.
The West Chester Police Canine Unit
The West Chester Police Department began its canine program in 1993 and currently has canines trained in both patrol and narcotics detection. The highly-trained canines and their handlers are prepared to track lost persons or suspects who flee police, locate evidence that has been discarded, and assist in the arrest or prevent the escape of serious or violent offenders.
West Chester Police canines are used more than 250 times annually. The canine teams work primarily during the night shift, but are on call 24 hours a day.
West Chester Police canines certify annually through the United States Police Canine Association (USPCA). They have been regionally and nationally recognized for their accomplishments at work and on the competition field, where they have won over 20 awards for superior performance.
West Chester Police canine teams are available to provide demonstrations at events and for community groups. For information on scheduling a demonstration, call 759-7250.