Jeff Humphrey

Keeping an eye on closed businesses

Jeff Humphrey, Media Manager, 509.625.6308

Friday, March 27, 2020 at 3:01 p.m.

As non-essential businesses close in the wake of COVID-19 concerns, the Spokane Police Department is adapting.

To do its part to slow the spread of the COVID virus, patrol officers are keeping their social distancing by holding daily roll calls outdoors for a couple of reasons.

“One is for that visual presence, just to be out here. And two, because we really believe that relationships equal mission success,” explained Lt. Rob Boothe of the Spokane Police Department.

As part of SPD’s new mission-focused patrols, officers will now spend a lot of their time looking after the shops and salons temporarily closed by the pandemic.

“In times like this, when people have to stay safe at home, then it’s our job to go and protect these properties. So it’s just one less thing they have to worry about,” said Ofc. Craig Hamilton.

“Hey, not trying to bug you or anything. Just checking businesses and you look closed,” Hamilton said to a lone insurance agent, working in his locked office.

Spokane police know closures can hurt our local business and make them targets for crime.                                           

So officers like Hamilton are determined to not let a break-in or stolen merchandise, add insult to an injured bottom line.

“We’re trying to make ourselves more visible, more approachable, trying to put everybody at ease, because, hey, we’re all paying taxes and this is what your police department is for,” emphasized Hamilton.

Last week, Spokane police caught three teens burglarizing the Indian Trail Rite-Aid after someone heard the sound of breaking glass and alerted an officer already in the area.

“Really, we encourage everybody to call 9-1-1 if they have a gut feeling something isn’t just right, and we’ll get somebody out there to check on it,” pledged Hamilton.

The COVID-19 waiting game will certainly try our patience and pocketbooks, but officers hope you’ll stay home and stay healthy, knowing Spokane police are still on the job, working to keep your family and property safe.

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