Citizen Ride-Along Policy & Waiver Form

Officer talking to student

Police Officers by Patrol Car

UPD Patrol Car

We welcome participation in our Citizen Ride-Along Program and hope your experience will be enjoyable as well as educational.

Although most of your time with us will likely involve routine police work, there is always the possibility of danger. Riding in a marked police vehicle with a uniformed police officer on patrol can place you in the same unexpected danger as the officer in the patrol car with you.

For this reason, we have established several guidelines:

  • Conduct yourself as an observer. You must not become physically or verbally caught up in any incident in which the officer is involved.
  • Feel free to ask questions of the officer, but do not do so when the officer is involved in an investigation or any other matter wherein the officer's full attention is required.
  • The officer may explain or demonstrate the uses for the various items of equipment inside the vehicle. However, you must not touch any of the equipment!
  • Remember that while you are riding along, the officer is concentrating on a number of things. Listening to the police radio, watching for suspicious activity or violations of the law and driving safely require the officer to be fully alert. If the officer's attention is directed elsewhere or if the officer asks you to stop speaking — please do so without question.
  • You may expect to go wherever the officer goes. If the officer is involved in a situation involving undue danger, you may be asked by the officer to remain in the patrol car to ensure your own safety. It is possible, but unlikely, that the officer may ask you to remain behind in a safe place while the officer responds to an extremely dangerous situation.
  • Wear your seat belt at all times while the patrol car is in motion.

UPD routinely runs a warrant check on all persons who desire to ride with an officer as part of this program. If you are interested in participating in this program, please complete our Citizen Ride-Along Waiver Form (pdf).

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