Erie & Meadville Police Train On Bicycles - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Erie & Meadville Police Train On Bicycles

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As part of the Erie police department's efforts targeting violent crime, officers get some new training this week.
It's a 2-wheeled approach to fighting crime.

Much like regular patrols, Erie police will use bicycles for targeted enforcement in neighborhood where they're seeing a lot of crime.

This week, 6 Erie police officers, along with 4 Meadville officers and one from adult probation, are all taking part in a 32-hour basic bicycle training course.
Two officers with the Erie police department Neighborhood Action Team are certified bike instructors, and are conducting the training at Erie's public safety building.
Erie Police Corporal Bill Marucci and Marc Nelson have gone through training to become certified instructors.

In the city, bicycle units are mostly used during major downtown events like Celebrate Erie and Roar on the Shore.
But police say they're also a great community policing tool.

"You can maneuver through the crowds and get there a lot quicker than officers would be able to on foot or in a patrol car," said Corporal  Marucci. "And one of the main things we teach are slow speed maneuvers, that's maneuvering through a crowd," Cpl. Marucci added.

"The reaction of residents, the citizens has been very positive. People enjoy seeing us and we're able to go up and get information," said Nelson. "We might receive complaints from neighbors from about problem houses, problem areas that we normally wouldn't get in a cruiser. It's easier for them to approach us on a bicycle, they feel more comfortable talking to us and provide us with information," Nelson added.

The Neighborhood Action Team, the Saturation Unit, and Housing Authority unit have been using the bikes for about 4 years, recent grant money will allow specifically for extra bike patrols this summer.
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