Reserve officer program to pay off in Tiffin - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Reserve officer program to pay off in Tiffin

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TIFFIN, OH (Toledo News Now) -

The Tiffin Police Department just got three new reserve officers.

Reserve officers have all the same powers of full-time officers. They ride with full-time officers, and are peace officer certified. But they work for free and are an extra set of trained eyes to keep people safe.

The Tiffin Police Department has 26 officers in uniform – five short of their allowed number. They now have five reserve officers – two in the detectives division and three sworn in Wednesday – and they'll be ready to hit the streets in a couple months.

"In this case, they will always be with a full-time officer that can guide them and give them instructions on how to write a ticket, here's how we do a criminal charge, here's the procedures when we arrest somebody," explained Police Chief Fredrick Stevens.

Chief Stevens started the reserve officer program in January. The department's empty positions can't be filled due to budget cuts, so to help ease the burden, reserve officers will work for free for a minimum of 16 hours a month.

"Just like the regular police officers, they would be covered by our city law director and stuff like that, so it comes down to training. You have to make sure that the full-time officers who are under all of that liability…are also watching out that they're not doing something illegal," Stevens said. "It's going to take a long time before we would even agree to allow one of the reserves be off on their own, if at all."

After fulfilling a year of service, reserve officers will have the opportunity to be hired as a full-time paid officer in the department, should funding be made available.

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