The Medina Police Department website states that all members of the department including Chief Patrick Berarducci are committed to community policing. Chief Berarducci adds that the community policing “philosophy drives nearly all of the activities that we are involved in”.
The Medina Police Department supports their community with two School Resource Officers, one assigned D.A.R.E. officer and a history of successful Citizen Police Academies. However, it is the unique programs that the Medina Police Department has implemented that have really made a difference.
A very successful program has involved assigning individual Medina police officers to specific apartment complexes. This approach gives each officer ownership and responsibility for improving the quality of life at each complex. Officers establish relationships within the apartment communities and are visible for residents. Officers also attend resident group activities to hear first-hand feedback. Additionally, officers act as advocates for residents by holding property management accountable for issues. The result is that management becomes more accountable and proactive in providing safe and clean housing for its residents.
Watching our Neighborhoods (WON) Cards is another effective community interaction program. The WON card program is used most frequently on the night shift and involves officers dropping off notes in citizens’ mail or paper boxes. The notes may include general safety advice, specific advice for the property or just indicate a presence in the neighborhood. This program has met with strong success with many times Medina’s citizens writing back to thank the individual officers for the note and safeguarding their neighborhood.
The Medina Police Department has also implemented a Domestic Violence Follow-up Program. Domestic violence is unfortunately a situation many police departments deal with on a routine basis. Medina officers regularly meet with domestic violence victims after the investigation is completed. The officers advise the victims of resources that are available. Not only does this follow-up program assist victims, but the additional time spent with victims frequently gives officers insight to the real problems and issues with domestic violence.
The Medina Police Department considers responding to medical calls as a form of community policing. All officers have been trained in Tactical Combat Casualty Care. Each officer carries a tourniquet and a trauma dressing treated with a clotting agent. Additionally, each police vehicle is equipped with a trauma bag which gives officers the capability of treating 6-8 victims in the event of a mass casualty incident.
Medina officers have used the tourniquets on two occasions – once following a vehicle pedestrian accident in which a juvenile suffered a severe leg injury and more recently when an individual suffered a serious laceration to his arm while using a concrete saw. Each vehicle is also equipped with a defibrillator (AED) and officers have used the devices on numerous occasions with successful results. Sergeant Brett McNabb states that “we view our role as caregivers to be an important part of our community policing efforts”.
Chief Berarducci believes that policing is a “shared effort between the police department and the citizens we serve”. He and the Medina Police Department are strong advocates of community interaction believing the that community policing is a “proactive problems solver that puts our officers in direct contact with citizens on a daily basis”.