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Park and Walk, an Old Strategy Revisited

NCJ Number
Law and Order Volume: 57 Issue: 6 Dated: June 2009 Pages: 71-76
Jody Kasper
Date Published
June 2009
6 pages
This article discusses the rationale and practices of "park-and-walk" police patrol programs.
Police administrators must develop and implement methods that integrate the concept of community policing with street-level officers, so that existing community partnership can be maintained and new ones can be developed. In facilitating this policy, the park-and-walk policy has patrol officers park their cruisers for a specified amount of time each shift. They walk through specific areas of their patrol zones. Target areas for walking include high-crime areas, business districts, parks, highly residential neighborhoods, and in and around schools. Walking activities should be documented after the walk-throughs are completed. Officers being out of their cars makes them more accessible to residents and commercial establishments, and it provides savings in fuel and vehicle wear and tear. Another benefit of the walk-and-park program is increased opportunities to develop informants who can provide information on crime-related activities in the community as well as specific suspects. In addition, walking throughout the community acquaints officers with the layout of the community, which can prove useful when officers become involved in foot pursuits and in general investigations that require knowledge of areas of access. Other advantages of park-and-walk are crime deterrence and exercise opportunities for improving officer health.