|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
||For More Information, Contact:
|August 16, 2006
||Coria Holland, Director of Communications
||617-727-5300, ext. 258
BEDFORD DISTRICT PROBATION OFFICERS
USE POLICE RADIOS TO PRESERVE SAFETY OF
OFFENDERS AND THEMSELVES
Members of the New Bedford District Court
Probation Warrant Team are using a new communications tool
-- police radios -- to help them stay one step ahead of
The five-member team, one assistant chief
and four Probation Officers, use the two-way police radios
for communications and safety reasons. Six Motorola radios
were purchased with a $2,200 federal Weed & Seed grant
for use by the New Bedford District Court Probation Department.
The Weed & Seed grant was awarded to the City of New Bedford.
The Probation Department police radios have a special frequency.
Because of this, the Probation Department was required
to obtain an FCC license to operate the radios.
"The two-way radios are a very important
safety tool when it comes to the apprehension of probationers
and entering their residence. When a Probation Officer
transmits a communication to another, all members of the
warrant apprehension team can hear that communication and
are made aware of what is taking place at any given time," said
New Bedford District Court Chief Probation Officer Barry
Williams said the police radios have made
a marked difference in how Probation Officers respond to
emergency situations. The Chief recalled at least three
recent incidents when the two-way radios helped preserve
the safety of offenders as well as the Probation Officers.
During a recent warrant sweep with New Bedford
Police, the radios were instrumental in saving a female
probationer from harm, according to Williams.
The offender acted in a threatening manner
to herself and others, vowing not to "go back to
jail" when confronted by her probation officer. The
Probation Officer in the woman's apartment alerted
the warrant apprehension team and New Bedford police via
police radio. The team and several police officers responded
by entering the front and back entrances of the woman's
apartment. She was then apprehended by New Bedford Police,
according to Williams.
Williams said messages transmitted using
the radios are heard by all members of the Warrant Apprehension
Team which allows them to assist each other when an emergency
arises. Team members include First Assistant Chief Probation
Officer Clinton J. Martin and Probation Officers Dennis
Halls, David J. Branco, Donald J. Chausse and Vincent L.