Humboldt County Sheriff Mike T. Downey is proud to announce the graduation of the 17th Sheriff’s Citizen on Patrol Academy held Saturday, Nov. 3 at Azalea Hall, 1656 Sutter Road, McKinleyville. Sheriff Downey was on hand to address the 18 academy class graduates.

In 1996 the S.C.O.P. program held its first Citizens Academy. Those citizens were trained to assist the sheriff’s office with its limited resources. These citizens provide an additional set of eyes and ears for deputies. S.C.O.P allows community members to learn about the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office and its role, and to assist in those functions.

S.C.O.P. has since expanded its role in the sheriff’s office ever since that first academy. Today S.C.O.P. performs various functions, including standard patrol where S.C.O.P members drive around in marked S.C.O.P. patrol cars and utilize the sheriff’s radio system to report crimes to the sheriff’s dispatch center.

Some of the other activities S.C.O.P. performs are traffic and crowd control at traffic accidents, fire scenes, disaster assistance, parades and special events. They also perform vacation house checks, assist at the sheriff’s animal shelter, coordinate and teach at neighborhood watch meetings, and assist with the sheriff’s boating and waterways program, which includes the sheriff’s office boats. There are many additional jobs including office jobs available to volunteers.

S.C.O.P. is a great way to learn about the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office, learn about Humboldt County and give back to the community while making it a safer place to live.

S.C.O.P. members are required to graduate from a 32-hour S.C.O.P. Academy, live in Humboldt County, be 21 years of age with a valid California driver’s license, pass a limited background check and donate an average of 16 hours per month.

If you are interested in leaning more about the sheriff’s office S.C.O.P. program, contact S.C.O.P. Captain Bernie Jorgenson at 268-2536.