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Busy year highlights mission to protect, serve

The year 2013 winds down! Who would have thought? We made it. As the blue and red lights shut down and the patrol day comes to an end, we unavoidably stroll toward the closure of 2013. During the past patrol year, we’ve shared many stories together: some good, some bad, some funny, some sad. So, in the final 2013 Boulder City Police Department blotter, I’d like to share my perceptions; I hope they make sense.

We, as police officers, have ringside seats to the best reality show life has. We are the referees and keepers for the Boulder City residents. As Boulder City’s modern day bobbies, we are grateful to have been provided an opportunity to serve and protect you. Maintaining the ideal clean, green oasis in the desert only minutes away from Las Vegas is no easy task. But, thanks to my fellow brothers and sisters in blue, in addition to a supportive community, we’ve continued to make Boulder City one of the best communities in America.

For almost two decades my eyes have witnessed the glory of a human spirit and the tragedy of a person’s peril. Our vessel is frangible and many often take for granted our good fortune. We abuse self with momentary or temporary reliefs sometimes legal, sometimes not. We occasionally disregard the rules. Our actions touch those we love and may involve strangers we never met.

As police officers, our fundamental goal is to maintain the status quo. Our proactiveness cannot be measured by citations or arrests, but by the community’s willing adherence to the law. I’m sure, in a small way the deterrence of crime can be contributed to by the presence of an armed uniformed officer, but it’s difficult to measure that. Protect and serve is not just a slogan on the side of a patrol car, but a heartfelt commitment at BCPD.

When a police hiring board asks the question, “Why do you want to become a police officer?” undeniably the most common response given by a prospective police applicant is “To help people.” After working with and speaking with thousands of officers, I conclude 99 percent of officers truly try to keep everyone safe because it is our ethos.

Trust me; I know the feeling of being a crime victim, a resident notified of a tragedy or a driver breaking the law. I may have not liked the information being communicated, but I’m grateful no matter where I’ve been, when contacted by police, the professionalism exhibited and practiced is second to none.

I remember a call this past year; we responded to a motorcycle accident on Nevada Highway in front of Jack-in-the-Box. The vacationing South American driver, on his way to see the splendor of Hoover Dam, was rear-ended by a motorcyclist. Our response time was within two minutes. We immediately assessed the situation, set up traffic control and cared for the injured. When Boulder City Fire Department arrived and took the injured to the hospital, we maintained scene safety.

The reason I mention this is because of the comment made by the tourist, “In my country, it would have taken a couple of hours to have the police respond.” I giggled under my breath; funny what we take for granted.

Nine-eleven, the address of your emergency? Oh, you have a water leak, we’ll send an officer. A barking dog? We’ll send an officer. A snake? We’ll send animal control. A domestic violence issue? We’ll send an officer. An overdose? We’ll send an officer. You’ve been sexually assaulted? We’ll send an officer. A suicide? We’ll send an officer. A shooting or stabbing? We’ll send an officer.

You get my drift? Why do we do it? It’s simple: protect and serve I say. It’s not just a job; it’s our way of life.

As the decades go by wearing the uniform, I’d like to say from all of us here at Boulder City Police Department, thanks for keeping it between the lines, most of the time in 2013. I hope that in 2014, we all remember to lock our doors, drive safely and sober, commit acts of kindness, not crime, and respect each other so that we can keep Boulder City being the best small town in America.

“Control, 269, we’ll be 10-7, out of service for 2013” Oh, by the way, keep it real BC!

Officer Jeffrey Grasso is a 10-year veteran of the Boulder City Police Department. He previously served as a police officer in south Florida for four years.

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