On the Beat

A question CWRU Police Department officers often get asked (in addition to the foremost question, “How do I get to the Cleveland Clinic from here?”) is “Are you guys real”? When we’re asked this, we assume people want to know if we are real policemen, as opposed to holographic projections.

The short answer is yes. CWRU police officers are commissioned, meaning they are graduates of an Ohio-certified police academy (no, it isn’t like the movie, sorry) so they have the same training as any other police officer in the state. We have also been given the same authority any Cleveland police officer possesses within the boundaries set by the city. So we are as real as any other police department in the state.

If you are wondering why a place like CWRU needs a police force, think of it this way— at any given time there could be 15,000 students, faculty, staff, visitors or resident squirrels on campus—can you think of a town that has 15,000 people and doesn’t have some type of police coverage?

With that having been said, we are a service-oriented department whose primary goal is to ensure your experience here is a safe and secure one, so please don’t hesitate to call us if there is something we can assist you with or something you think we need to know about. Calling the police department does not mean you are now Ratso Rizzo, police snitch, but instead it shows you care enough about the campus community to take action to help keep it safe. Most police departments are only as effective as the citizens the police enable them to be, and we are no exception.

It is also worth pointing out that this is the time of year when incidents involving alcohol, usually being consumed by students under 21 and in hospital-visit-inducing amounts, tend to spike. While it remains illegal in Ohio to drink alcohol if you are under 21, if you become aware of someone who needs medical attention due to alcohol consumption please don’t hesitate to get them the help they need from somebody- Housing staff, police, etc. That is a case where the consequences of doing nothing absolutely outweigh the consequences of doing something.
On the Beat is a weekly safety column written by Sergeant Jeffrey Daberko & Officer Mark (The Crossing Guard) Chavis of CWRU PD. Send feedback to this or other columns at policecolumn@case.edu.