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Mounted police unit great asset for city

This series of day-in-the-life of stories provides a candid look behind the scenes of the Boulder City police officers who protect and serve Boulder City.

It’s the start of Labor Day weekend and everything is so very different in Boulder City, Las Vegas and throughout the world due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Nothing is the same anymore; the festivities, celebrations and staycations that we used to enjoy in past years as the unofficial end to summer are all just faint memories of what was once so very wonderful in Southern Nevada.

And that includes the parades throughout Nevada where our city’s police department’s mounted police unit would be called to assist with crowd control and add extra security for those events.

Boulder City Police has not only one of the finest mounted police units in the U.S., but it has a stellar developed nonprofit mounted police unit and program led by a dedicated veteran police officer who has been a resident of the city for more than 18 years and has committed himself to serving the community and the department for its betterment and continued positive growth.

Officer Scott Pastore has designed, created and developed one of the most elite mounted police unit models in today’s law enforcement and has been called on upon by law enforcement agencies abroad for his knowledge and assistance in helping with the development of mounted police units for those agencies. Officer Pastore has accomplished this extraordinary task over the years without the financial support or aid from the department or that of the city of Boulder City. It has all been done solely by donations made to this nonprofit unit.

Recently, the mounted police unit was made an essential and permanent unit program of the Boulder City Police Department by the City Council, which will ensure that all of the great work this unit does throughout our community and the state will continue in the years to come, long after officer Pastore retires his saddle.

Some of the wonderful work that the mounted unit does around our community is help with the mentoring of our youth, helping them find positive paths to follow in life, develop and grow into leaders and great members of society.

The mounted police unit was out during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic visiting our senior residents at various assisted living and care facilities throughout the city, brightening their day and providing a comforting uplift during a very challenging and dark time for most amid the stay-at-home order issued by our governor. I was fortunate to have been in attendance for one of those visits, and it was so wonderful to see how genuinely happy the seniors were seeing the unit’s uniformed officers riding in on patrol horses Odie and Star.

The seniors were allowed to physically interact with the mounted police unit during their visit. What a delight it was for those seniors, the heartfelt warmth and the surge of joy, laughter and happiness consumed the atmosphere at The Homestead at Boulder City.

Over the years the unit has visited cities and communities representing our community well in its service. The mounted police unit is now only one of two mounted police units left in existence in Nevada, as the Metropolitan Police Department in Las Vegas deactivated and dissolved their unit earlier this year. The Boulder City mounted unit received generously donated equipment from Metro, along with some new additions to their hoofed patrol officers.

The mounted police unit provides an array of services to the community and is a viable law enforcement unit designed to enhance Boulder City Police Department in its efforts to protect and serve. Currently, the unit is working hard to procure enough funds to build a much-needed permanent training facility and home for the unit’s patrol horses. Hopes for completion of this project are slated for early 2021. With the community’s help it can happen.

So, today we salute Officer Scott Pastore for his extraordinary dedication, loyalty and service to the community, and we equally salute the team of officers and volunteers who comprise the department’s mounted police unit. Thank you for making our city great and our police department greater. Bravo!

Aly Rashaad is a dispatcher in Southern Nevada. She served as the director of fundraising and marketing for the LASD Road Racing Association for Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, which provided the NASCAR and positive leadership experience to at-risk inner-city youth. She can be reached at Alys.View@ymail.com.

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