Ride Along Program

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ride_alongThe Cypress Police Department encourages community involvement in the law enforcement process and allows interested citizens and student interns to ride as passenger observer with patrol officers for civic or educational reasons. The purpose of the Cypress Police Department Ride-Along Program is to encourage community involvement and to educate the public by opening up the lines of communication. The Ride-Along Program promotes a better understanding of the challenges, risks and rewards of the police officers role in the community. The Ride-Along Program is administered through the Community Services Unit of the Support Services Division.

Who is eligible to participant as a ride-along?

  1. Members of adult or youth groups.
  2. College or university law enforcement students engaged in research or fulfilling project or program requirements.
  3. Police officers from other jurisdictions.
  4. Visiting dignitaries or officials.
  5. Other members of the criminal justice system.
  6. Any other person over the age of 16 years-old with approval from the Watch Commander or Patrol Supervisor or the Community Relations Unit supervisor.

Basically anyone could participate in the Ride-Along Program as long as they meet the requirements to participate.

When can I ride along?

  1. Ride Alongs are scheduled in four (4) hour blocks and coincide with the different patrol shifts. Shifts change at 6am and 6pm daily. You may ride along for longer than four (4) hours if approved.
  2. There is a place on the application form to request specific dates and times to ride along. We will try to schedule your ride-along as requested, however there is no guarantee that your request can be accommodated.
  3. We will contact you to let you know whether your application to ride along has been approved and the date and time you are scheduled to ride.

Ride Along Program Rules and Guidelines:

  1. All persons wishing to participate in the Ride-Along program must be at least 16 years of age.
  2. All participants in the Ride-Along Program must read, agree, and abide by all rules and guidelines, complete the Ride-Along application, and the “Personal Injury and Personal Damage or Loss Waiver” or “Parental/Guardian Consent Slip and Liability Waiver” form before the Ride-Along. If the participant is a juvenile, the parent(s) or guardian(s) must sign the waiver and have it notarized before an approval can be granted.
  3. Participants are only permitted to ride once every six (6) months.
  4. Participants must have a valid photo ID or drivers license in possession when reporting for their scheduled ride-along.
  5. Participants must be dressed in clothing appropriate for contact with the public - business casual. Shirts without collars, T-shirts, tank tops, sweat shirts, shorts, short skirts, halter tops, sneakers, high heel shoes, baseball caps, beanies, and similar attire are not permitted.
  6. Participants shall conduct themselves in a civil and courteous manner at all times.
  7. Participants must wear their seat belts at all times while in the patrol car.
  8. Participants must remain in the patrol car at all times unless told that you may accompany the officer.
  9. In case of a potentially dangerous or hazardous call, participants may be dropped off at a safe location. If this occurs, the officer will give the participant specific instructions and arrange to have them picked up by another officer.
    *Please note that this is for the participant’s safety.
  10. Participants must not become involved in any incident the officer is handling. This includes discussions of an incident with victims, witnesses, or suspects.
    **Participants might observe occurrences or activities during the ride-along which may require them to submit a written statement and/or testify in court at a later time.
  11. No tape recordings, cameras, or similar devices are allowed without prior approval from the Chief of Police or his/her designee.
  12. You may carry a non-camera cellular telephone with you, but you will not be allowed to make and.or receive calls during your ride-along except in an emergency.
  13. For security and safety reasons, participants are not allowed to handle or use any of the officer’s equipment or the equipment in the patrol car.
  14. The Watch Commander or shift supervisor or host officer has the discretion to deny or terminate the ride-along at any time if it detracts from or jeopardizes the safety of the officer or the law enforcement mission.
  15. The carrying of weapons is prohibited, with the exception of other law enforcement officers. Such officers will not act as an agent of this department and will dress in civilian clothes following the described appropriate attire.
  16. It is advisable to bring enough money with you to purchase any food or refreshments you might want to consume while you are riding along. Generally, the officer will have the opportunity to take a short break and have a lunch period while you are together. If you wish to eat or drink something during these times, you are expected to pay for them yourself. 17. Failure to comply with any of the above listed rules and guidelines will result in the immediate termination of the ride-along.

Application Procedure:

Applicants must complete the Ride-Along application and required forms and submit the completed application and forms to:

Cypress Police Department
5275 Orange Ave.
Cypress, CA 90630
Attn: Community Services (Ride Along)

Thank you for your interest in the Cypress Police Department Ride-Along Program. Law enforcement is a unique and valuable service to the community, and the Ride-Along Program helps educate citizens about the daily challenges and risks, as well as the opportunities for service that come with police work. We encourage questions, comments, and suggestions about this program and the Cypress Police Department. If you have any questions please call the Community Services Unit at (714)229-6626.