Jan. 26, 2018 – Residents who think they may have noticed more marked police cars are not imagining it. Police have significantly increased their presence in recent weeks, keeping marked squads constantly on the move throughout the community both on the streets and in the alleys.
Oak Park Police also are relying on long-established relationships with other law enforcement agencies, including the County Sheriff’s Police who have stepped up patrols and high-visibility traffic stops in and around Oak Park, according to Police Chief Anthony Ambrose,
“Having additional marked squad cars on our streets is important, whether they bear the emblem of the Oak Park Police Department or any other law enforcement agency,” he said. “Criminals rely on finding targets they can hit quickly and move on. Seeing a roving patrol car is a sure way to make a criminal think twice.”
Oak Park Mayor Anan Abu-Taleb praised Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin for making good on the pledge he made at a community forum in December to reach out to the Sheriff for help.
“Commissioner Boykin’s support of Oak Park Police is important to having a regional approach to fighting crime,” Mayor Abu-Taleb said. “The lines that separate communities mean little to criminals who are looking for opportunities wherever they may be, whether in Chicago, Oak Park, River Forest, Forest Park or anywhere else in the region. We all need to work together to ensure the safety of our residents.”
Patrol strategies are not fixed, according to Chief Ambrose, who says his command staff constantly monitors crime reports and communicates with fellow law enforcement agencies to identify trends and adjust strategies accordingly.
“High visibility throughout the community with marked squad cars is a proven crime prevention tactic. But we also maintain an aggressive undercover approach to broaden the reach of patrols, especially in areas where data suggest a trend may be developing,” he said.
Chief Ambrose also reiterated his belief that residents are key to the success of Oak Park’s community policing strategy. With 100 miles of streets and 450 alleys adding another 50 miles to patrol, engaged residents who are willing to report suspicious persons and activities by calling 911 are essential, he said.
For more information on crime prevention, residents are urged to contact their Resident or Neighborhood Beat Officers. Contact information is posted at www.oak-park.us/rbo.