June 30, 2016

Partly sunny

Medina’s Police Specials Unit provides valued service to city

MEDINA — How much has the Medina Police Specials Unit saved the city over the years?

Try multiplying the 77,988 hours they put in as volunteers over the past 21 years by any reasonable wage and see what you get.

Mayor Dennis Hanwell said the Specials Unit officers help keep the city safe without breaking their budget.

The Medina Police Specials Unit helps staff parades, festivals and other events requiring security so full-time officers don’t add overtime and those on patrol can continue to respond to calls.

“They are quite a dedicated group,” the mayor said. “I don’t know what we would do without them.”

Police Chief Patrick Berarducci said the Specials Unit volunteers totaled 2,039 hours of service last year.

The special unit began in 1957 and swore in itsr first nine officers in 1958. The group meets monthly with itsdepartment liaison officer Sgt. Brett McNabb for training.

In addition to special events, volunteer officers regularly help patrol the city to help with community policing and, directing traffic at accidents, and assist with emergencies including missing children.

In December, the volunteer officers added another service to their line of work when they launched Operation House Call.

Through Operation House Call, the specials unit makes free weekly calls and visits to seniors and disabled persons living alone in the community. Seniors over 55 are eligible to register for the program.

For more information about the Specials Unit or the Medina Police Force, follow the Medina Police Department on Facebook at www.facebook.com/medinapolice.

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The Gazette is Medina County's daily local news source, serving the community since 1832. Contact The Gazette's news department at (330) 721-4065 or areanews@medina-gazette.com.