The Community Oriented Policing Section, or COPS unit, is comprised of four Neighborhood Police Officers (NPO). Each NPO is assigned to districts throughout Lakewood. NPO's are fully uniformed, commissioned Police Officers who are focused on resolving crime problems and improving the quality of life in their assigned district.
The NPO provides a consistent police presence and builds ongoing relationships with citizens, businesses, and other groups. They work very closely with the Community Safety Resource Team (CSRT) . They problem-solve neighborhood issues, involve those parties that are affected, and call on additional resources, such as the Gang Unit, Special Operations Unit and outside agencies to help resolve the problem. They also work closely with other sections of the police department,the Department of Corrections, City building inspectors, the Fire Marshal, the State Liquor Commission, the Department of Health, and other agencies as appropriate to resolve neighborhood issues. They are your direct link to a Police Officer for neighborhood crime issues.
NPO's are highly skilled, highly trained and highly motivated police officers who have volunteered to take this specific role in their communities. NPO's differ from regular patrol officers in that they don't get radio-dispatched to calls. Instead they are given the flexibility and tools to address long-term criminal problems that don't respond to a simple quick arrest. NPO's have a high degree of latitude to conduct their operations and are able to flex their work schedules as necessary to obtain results. Additionally, they maintain regular citizen contacts to develop that old-fashioned "cop on the beat" familiarity with their district's citizens and concerns.
Lakewood residents are committed to working in conjunction with the Lakewood Police Department and have helped to create a cohesive, proactive and extremely effective partnership against crime with the Community Policing Unit. A good example of this commitment can be seen in the Crime Free Housing Program.
Crime Free Housing
The City of Lakewood has one of the best and most active Crime Free Housing Programs in the state. The program is a partnership between the Lakewood Police Department and the owners and managers of multi-family housing in Lakewood. In order for an apartment complex to be certified as Crime Free the property must successfully complete a three phase program that insures that they have met the standards for Crime Free Housing.
The first phase is a twelve hour class for owners and managers that train them in a variety of subjects from screening tenants, to how to spot a meth lab. The second phase is a physical inspection of the property to insure that all crime prevention requirements, such as dead bolts, have been met. And lastly, there is a safety social where the tenants can get to know each other and work together to keep crime out of their complex.
All prospective tenants are screened for criminal history. No one may live in a Crime Free complex unless they have had no criminal convictions for the last seven years and no registered sex offenders are allowed. Participation in the program is voluntary and there is no cost to attend the class.
The Crime Free Housing List contains a complete listing of Crime Free Housing participants.