Citizens On Patrol program seeks volunteers

The Humboldt County Sheriff's Citizens On Patrol, established in 1996, allows citizens to voluntarily serve as the "eyes and ears" of the sheriff's office. Participants perform a variety of functions including but not limited to traffic control, patrol in a S.C.O.P. vehicle, boating and marine patrol, vacation house checks, filing, assisting at special events and at the Humboldt County Sheriff's Animal Shelter, and disaster assistance. S.C.O.P. has also been very active in speaking to neighborhood watch groups, according to a sheriff's office press release.

Program volunteers logged almost 32,000 miles patrolling various parts of Humboldt County in 2012. They provided 446 vacation house checks, 14,563 business checks, 1,997 hours of parks and playground checks, and members donated 7,325 hours to the community, according to the release.

The program trains and educates citizens about general law enforcement, specifically the sheriff's office. Some current sheriff's office deputies started their careers in the S.C.O.P program.

Program participants are required to be at least 21 years of age, have a valid California Drivers License, pass a background check, and donate at least 17 hours a month. Volunteers accepted will receive 32 hours of training in the S.C.O.P Academy.

Anyone interested in joining the S.C.O.P. program can contact S.C.O.P Captain Bernie Jorgensen at 268-2536.