Executive Vice President
by Eugene Berghoff
This years Park Police Seminar was most successful, both in attendance and participation.
Police responsibility for effective law enforcement in public parks should have a clear understanding of laws related to arrest, search and seizure. This was pointed out to those in attendance by William Roberts, First Assistant State's Attorney of Sangamon County, Illinois.
Our luncheon speaker, Springfield Police Chief William Ascher, believes control of crime in parks is enhanced by law enforcement agencies that work closely together.
Robert H. Lawson, Director of Springfield Park District, discussed that one of the greatest problems of park police is vandalism.
He believes that vandalism can be controlled, but not stopped completely. He recommended several methods of control including effective law enforcement, education, public relations, supervision, and maintenance.
From our personal visits and contact with local park systems throughout Illinois, we have observed that many are not able to provide adequate police programs.
A large percentage of crime in Illinois occurred in parks, which, therefore, behooves us to assist these districts in improving their capacity of combatting crime.
Our up-dated Police Survey, which has just been published and distributed; lists 28 park districts that have full-time police departments, 45 with part-time departments, and 78 that rely on cooperative agreements with other local law enforcement agencies. Additional copies of the 1976 Park Police Survey is available at $3 per copy.
One of the major problems in organizing or maintaining an adequate police department is training. Through the efforts of your Association and the co-operation of the Illinois Department of Conservation, police training is now available. If your district would be interested in such a program, you should contact Chief William Brey, Department of Conservation, Room 601, State Office Building, Springfield, Illinois 62706 (217) 782-6431.
Your Association will continue to put forth every effort to co-ordinate federal and state assistance programs and to provide leadership in developing a co-operative spirit between police agencies of all local government units.
Illinois Parks and Recreation 3 November/December, 1976