TOPANGA CANYON—The Los Angeles Police Department Topanga Division added a new volunteer patrol community to help patrol neighborhoods in the Topanga region. The volunteers were announced at a news conference in front of the Topanga Police Station on Thursday, August 16.

The department added eight volunteers to keep a lookout for potential crimes transpiring in the area. Officers will send the volunteer patrol to neighborhoods were property crime has been on the rise, which includes residential burglaries, car theft, and porch pirating.

“These visible patrols act as force multipliers, allowing sworn officers to address violent crime in progress”, said Deputy Chief Kris Pitcher, who oversees the entire San Fernando Valley, and was captain at Devonshire Area when the first volunteer patrols were started several years ago.

Councilmember Bob Blumenfield, City Council District 3, greeted all the volunteers. “I am proud to help launch and financially support the Volunteer Patrol Program at the LAPD Topanga Station,” he told the group. “Now, all three divisions in my district have more eyes and ears in the community; folks who are empowered and trained to help our law enforcement and report crime on our streets.”

After the news conference ended, four of the eight volunteers who were in attendance were sent out on their first patrol. They were presented with two electric cars to use while on patrol duties.

“There’s an old adage: ‘the police are the people and the people are the police’,” explained Capt. Maureen Ryan, commanding officer of Topanga Area. “These citizen patrols will become added eyes and ears on the street, deterring crime and reporting suspicious activity.”

Community members who are interested in being involved in the TCVP, please contact Officer Jose Lazo-Maltez at (818)756-3180. For more details, contact Topanga Division Sergeant, Karen Rayner at (818) 756-3070.

Written By Nina Garza and Donald Roberts