BEND, OR -- Starting in September, Bend Police will station at College Resource Officer (CRO) at Central Oregon Community College, "To work with the college and the [campus] public safety, and just enhance the relationship and work with the college students," says Bend Police Lieutenant Clint Burleigh, "And, [it] gives us just a great working environment for both public safety and the police officers."
COCC and Bend PD signed the agreement Thursday, formalizing the partnership. Lt. Burleigh tells KBND News, "I don't know that it's a direct result of Kaylee's Law, but it is about relationships, and safety, and making sure people have a reliable resource to report to." Under Kaylee's Law, signed earlier this year by Governor Brown, community college public safety departments are required to differentiate themselves from sworn police.
Burleigh says the CRO will be similar to School Resource officers already at work in Bend-La Pine Schools, "It's great for the public, it's great for the community, it does nothing but enhance the services these students are getting at COCC; just like it enhances the services the students are getting at Bend-La Pine." He adds, "To fill the position will be from within the organization, so somebody that's already been a police officer for two to five years." Burleigh says Bend PD will then hire a replacement for the officer who takes the full-time position at the COCC campus.
The cost of the CRO position will be shared by the city and college. "This is a situation where we want to be proactive in our partnership with COCC," says Lt. Burleigh, "And I think that really accomplishes that mission."