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Rossford police bring back bike patrol

Thanks to financial help from businesses and organizations in the Rossford area, bike patrol is back for the first time since the 1990s.

ROSSFORD, Ohio — For the first time since the 1990s, the Rossford Police Department is welcoming back its bike patrol.

"We actually obtained a bicycle, had it marked, got the officer uniformed and got all the equipment to do it safely," Rossford Police Chief Todd Kitzler said.

With help from Rossford businesses, Big Brothers Big Sisters and more local organizations, Rossford police officers can now hit the streets on two wheels.

"Just makes it a lot easier for us to engage with the community with an officer on a bike with business owners and kids out this summer, and the officer can interact with those people a lot easier than when they're in a patrol car," Chief Kitzler said.

The feeling is the same for some employees in the Rossford area.

"An officer on a bike would just be more approachable and less scary especially for children," said Jessica Lawrence, an employee at Rossford Nutrition. "I feel like a child will approach a person on a bike verses in a car because of what we teach them."

Business owners say they are open to the idea of having more patrol, but do not feel unsafe in the area.

"If it can help traffic or just any sort of things on the road, I'm sure that would always be nice," said Brigitta Burks, owner of Ella Flora in Rossford.

Right now, Rossford police only have one officer on bike patrol, Officer Wesley Socie, who is set to patrol the business district and surrounding neighborhoods.

There are plans to train more officers in the near future.

There is also a "Pedal with Police" event in Rossford coming up on Monday, June 27. The event offers kids the opportunity to go through some police training for bike patrol and ride with officers. 

There will be food and a giveaway for bike gear and a bike. It's from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Rossford High School. The event is free.

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