January 2019 District Newsletter
As we dive into 2019, I'd like to submit to you that we each include a New Year's Resolution to become safer on the roadways. For context, as I write this, a motorcycle rider is struggling for her life after a vehicle turned left in front of her yesterday. Even worse, she was just the passenger; she had no control over the situation. Each time we get behind the wheel, we are in control of a machine with the potential to be life-altering to us, our passengers and those around us.
Steps you can take to be a safe driver include increasing your following distance, not texting while driving, looking twice before making a turn and pointing out potential dangers to yourself. Potential dangers could be a slow-moving vehicle up ahead, the texting teenager next to you, foliage that blocks your view or the pedestrian who looks like he's trying to cross the street mid-block.
Know your limit when drinking alcohol. To this effect, the Scottsdale Police Department created the "Know Your Limit" program, with the goal of preventing potential drunk drivers from getting behind the wheel in the first place vs. arresting them after the fact. In this program, officers head to the entertainment district allowing citizens to use a portable breathalyzer to see their actual alcohol levels and understand how it affects them. it was a big hit and the program went national. See this video for more about the revolutionary program. We continue to operate "Know Your Limit" details in the entertainment district, special events and other areas throughout the city. Curious about how long it takes alcohol to burn off in your body? See the Arizona Governor's Office of Highway Safety to learn more. Bottom line, after drinking, prescription use or even certain medical procedures, get a ride. It will be worth it.
Speaking of "getting a ride", can you believe that ride-sharing apps have been in place now for about nine years? Make sure to follow standard safety precautions when getting into an unknown vehicle. Ask yourself - is this the car I ordered? Verify that what you see on your app matches what you're seeing in front of you. Verify the vehicle description and plate or by asking the driver to confirm his or her name. Also, never hand over your phone if they claim they don't know how to get to your desired location. A driver without a map is like a climber without a rope.
Finally, as we share the road, expect and plan for setbacks. Think road closures and restrictions due to events, accidents, construction or more. Be prepared to pull over and find yourself an alternate route, either by keeping a map in your vehicle or knowing where to look on your phone. One of the most dangerous things you can do is to drive around lost or unprepared. It causes you to make rash maneuvers, drive slower than traffic and/or become distracted as you look down at the map. All of this means that you're the road hazard.
This year, let's all work together to reach our New Year's resolutions (and destinations) safely.
Commander Bruce Ciolli
Foothills District Commander
Reporting crimes online
Did you know you can file some police reports online? With the new ScottsdaleEZ system, filing a police report online is easy and convenient. Medical emergencies, in-progress crimes and crimes where the suspect is still present will still be reported to 9-1-1.
Crimes that can be reported online include thefts valued under $1,000, all bicycle thefts, shoplifts, criminal damage under $2,000 and lost property under $2,500. If your report qualifies to be reported online, gather all the information you have... the more the better! Be sure to include serial numbers, detailed descriptions, photos, suspect information and any other information you think may be relevant. This easy process will walk you step-by-step through answering the necessary questions to get your report filed.
Once you submit your information, you will receive an email with your report number. Receiving your report number can take up to 72 hours, as reports are only reviewed Monday through Thursday during normal business hours.
To file a report online, go to eservices.ScottsdaleAZ.gov/crimereport. To report all other crimes that do not fall into one of these categories, please call 480-312-5000.
Ride-sharing bicycles and scooters
You have probably seen plenty of the rental bicycles and electric scooters around town due to the increased popularity in ride-sharing. The city of Scottsdale recently enacted some changes to the city ordinance to address the issues related to this, particularly in parking these devices.
Riders are expected to keep the sidewalks open to pedestrians and to park the bicycles and scooters in racks or in designated parking areas. A maximum of five devices per company are allowed within 200 feet of each other. They should not be parked on private property unless they have permission from the property owner.
If you find a bicycle or electric scooter that is improperly parked, there are several ways to report the issue. The fastest and most effect way to report devices that are parked improperly is through the city's website at scottsdaleaz.gov/EZ, type "bike" or "scooter" into the search box and follow the prompts to make a report. The application will forward your report to staff or to the private bike- and scooter-sharing companies.
Parking issues can also be reported directly to the owner companies:
Bird (black and white scooters): Call 1-866-205-2442 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lime (yellow and green bikes and scooters): Call 1-888-546-3345 or email email@example.com.
Razor (red scooters): Call 1-833-LAST-MILE or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can also report parking issues by calling 480-312-RIDE (7433) 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.
The Scottsdale Police Department will only respond to illegally parked ride-sharing bicycles or electric scooters if they are parked in an extremely hazardous location, such as blocking a roadway. The ride-share companies are required to remove the illegally parked devices immediately after they are notified.
If you have additional questions about bike or electric scooter regulations, please visit ScottsdaleAZ.gov.
New CamerEyes program
The Scottsdale Police Department has announced the CamerEyes registry. Citizens and businesses may voluntarily register their security camera systems in the registry. This is a confidential database that will allow police employees to quickly know where there may be cameras in an area when trying to apprehend a criminal. The police department will not have direct access to the cameras and owners are not obligated to provide video footage. The program is voluntary and registration only takes a few minutes to complete. Citizens can withdraw from the program at any time. Citizens can register at ScottsdaleAZ.gov/police/security-camera-registration.
Becoming a part of the Scottsdale Police Department - over 50 various civilian positions
When you read "Scottsdale Police Department" just now, you probably visualized men and women in uniform, didn't you? You'd be surprised how many people don't think about the hundreds of civilians it takes to support and run a law enforcement agency. Too many people walk past our job booth just because they're not interested in being a police officer. "That's okay," we say as we pull out our massive binder of positions. "How about any of these? Analysts, Budget Specialists, Crime Scene Specialists, Detention Officers, Dispatchers, Forensics, Personnel, Property and Evidence, Records, Secretarial." We could go on and on. If you or someone you know would like to take a second look, head over to our Jobs page and type "police" in the search field. You can even sign up to get a notification when the job you are interested in has an availability.
Behind the Badge
What really goes on during a police department internal affairs investigation? Hint - your favorite crime drama probably got it wrong. Police Chief Alan Rodbell explores the topic with members of the Scottsdale investigation team.
To watch previous episodes of Behind the Badge, just visit the SPD YouTube page.
"Shred It" events
Don't be a potential victim of identity theft. Protect your identity by attending a "Shred It" event. Bring your personal and/or commercial documents to be shredded from 7 to 10 a.m. on the day of the event at the Walmart parking lot, 15355 N. Northsight Blvd. Upcoming dates, all Saturdays, are Jan. 5, Feb. 9 and Mar. 2. Cost is $4 per box. All paper is shredded on site. These events are hosted by Police Officers of Scottsdale Association. Proceeds benefit POSA Outreach and their charitable events.
Electronics Recycling Collection Day
Recycle your old electronics equipment, including computers, TVs and phones. Our next electronics recycling events will be from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, and Saturday, May 4, at the North Corp Yard, 9191 E. San Salvador Drive.
Find out all the items that can be recycled.