Dublin PD To Introduce Community Service Officers At Irish Fest - NBC4: Columbus, Ohio News, Weather, and Sports (WCMH-TV)

Dublin PD To Introduce Community Service Officers At Irish Festival

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The Dublin Community Service Officers will make their debut at the 26th Dublin Irish Festival. The Dublin Community Service Officers will make their debut at the 26th Dublin Irish Festival.
DUBLIN, Ohio -

The Dublin Division of Police says the department will be introducing a new group of officers at the Dublin Irish Festival over the weekend – but they won't be sworn-in officers.

A citizen's police force, comprised of community service officers, is the latest addition to the Dublin police force.

The Irish Festival is the biggest event of the year for the City of Dublin. It attracts an estimated 100,000 visitors from all over the nation, and performers from all over the world.

Dublin Police Chief Heinz Von Eckartsberg says the 10 community service officers will make their debut at the festival. Their job will be to assist police officers by being their eyes and ears, and handling more of the non-threatening police work such as helping with lost children or keeping an eye out for underage drinking.

The team was put together to help with the tasks that may keep officers away from emergencies with the hopes of improving response times.

"They're going to help us with parking enforcement. They're going to help us do house checks, vacation house checks, when someone's away," said Von Eckartsberg. "Our community service officers are not police officers. They're what the name says: they're community service officers. They're not armed, they will not make arrests, they do not do any enforcement of the law."

The service officers will be equipped with radios so that they can contact police if they see a crime.

Abdul Sawah is one of the 10 volunteers. He says he spent 30 years as a firefighter and EMS technician in Fairfax, Virginia. He says he volunteers as a community service officer because he enjoys it.

"I feed on it -- as my wife tells me. I feed on being in the public," says Sawah.

Sawah and the other volunteers have agreed to work at least eight hours a month as part of the program.

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