Michael R. Bernard
Bedford Police Department
Bedford, New Hampshire
The Patrol Division is under the direction of Lt. Michael Bernard. Lt. Michael Bernard grew up in the Town of Bedford and graduated from the New Hampshire Technical Institute in Concord, NH with an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice. He completed his internship in 1994 with the Bedford Police Department and joined the Auburn Police Department in 1995 as a part-time police officer. He was hired as a full-time officer with the Auburn Police Department in 1997 and attended the 114th Police Academy. In 1999 Lt. Bernard joined the Bedford Police Department and was promoted to Patrol Sergeant in 2006. During his time with the Bedford Police Department Lt. Bernard served as a FTO and assigned to the motorcycle patrol from 1999 to 2006. In July of 2008 Lt. Bernard was promoted to the rank of Patrol Lieutenant where he now oversees and directs the entire Patrol Division.
The word "patrol" is used in its broadest sense. It is considered to be a primary law enforcement function and embraces much more than the act of patrolling. This is the core service element of the Department that comprises the bulk of agency resources in order to satisfy the public demand for law enforcement; crime prevention and deterrent patrol; highway safety; community policing, as well as non-law enforcement related public safety and problem solving services.
The effective delivery of timely public safety services that successfully prevents, deters, and solves crime as well as addresses highway accidents, enforce traffic safety laws/regulations, and responds to critical life-saving calls-for-service is contingent upon the availability of Patrol Division resources (uniformed police officers). The patrol division utilizes Compstat to track and address crime. Compstat offers a dynamic approach to crime reduction, quality of life improvement in Bedford, and personnel and resource management within the Department, whereby the Bedford Police Department identifies spikes in crimes using comparative statistics and address those spikes through the use of targeted directed patrols and “Hot Spot” enforcement.
Forward deployed, highly trained, equipped, motivated and properly directed uniformed police personnel available to conduct preventative and deterrent patrol and community based activity remains the foundation and emphasis of the Department’s Patrol Division.
The Patrol Division’s concurrent priority to respond to calls-for-service and solve public problems in combination with community programs forms the critical elements in achieving the public’s expectations for safety, security and the reduction of harm in the Town of Bedford.
Concomitant with this expectation is the requirement to execute the mission of the Department with the greatest degree of efficiency and effectiveness to maximize the utilization of public resources (tax dollars) by measuring performance and progress toward annual crime reduction, highway safety and community policing goals and to continue to maintain Bedford as one of the safest communities to live, work and enjoy in the State of New Hampshire.
Patrol Division's duties include, but are far from being limited to:
• Emergency Call Response
• Law Enforcement State Felony & Misdemeanor Statutes
• Federal Law
• Town Ordinances
• Routine Investigations
• Routine Non-Emergency Call Response
• Security Checks
• Special Duties
• Traffic Accident Investigation
• Traffic Control
• Traffic Enforcement
• Traffic Safety Checks
The Patrol Division also includes the following sub-divisions:
The traffic division is responsible for traffic enforcement and investigating motor vehicle accidents throughout the town of Bedford. The Bedford Police Department is equipped with a 2015 Harley Davidson Electraglide. The police motorcycle is used to help the traffic division with lowering traffic violations and is a great community policing tool for the department. The Traffic Division is also equipped with two Radar Trailers. The radar trailers are set up at various locations in town and helps remind residents and visitors to watch their speeds. All motorcycle officers are required to attend a certified Harley Davidson motorcycle school before being allowed to operate the police motorcycle.
Mountain Bike Patrol
The use of police bicycles instead of cars can make police officers more easily approachable, especially in low-crime areas. Bicycles can also be issued to police officers to enhance the mobility and range of foot patrols. Bicycles are also effective crime-fighting tools when used in densely populated urban areas. The bikes are nearly silent in operation and many criminals do not realize that an approaching person on a bike is actually a police officer. Furthermore, if the criminal attempts to flee on foot, the riding police officer has a speed advantage while able to quickly dismount if necessary. All mountain bike officers are required to attend a week long school to be certified to ride the mountain bike.
Vehicular accident reconstruction is the scientific process of investigating, analyzing, and drawing conclusions about the causes and events during a vehicle collision. Reconstructionists are employed to conduct in-depth collision analysis and reconstruction to identify the collision causation and contributing factors in different types of collisions, including the role of the driver(s), vehicle(s), roadway and the environment. The laws of physics and engineering principles such as the conservation of linear momentum, work-energy methods, and kinematics are the basis for these analyses and may make use of software to calculate useful quantities. The accident reconstruction provides rigorous analysis that an expert witness can present at trial. Accident reconstructions are done in cases involving fatalities and serious bodily injury accidents. In 2010 the Bedford Police Department purchased a state of the art Nikon “Total Station.” The Total Station is used to produce professional accident diagrams and measurements.
The Bedford Police Department’s Community Policing Program is an integral and critical function of the Department’s overall strategic mission to deliver the highest quality public safety services in partnership with our residents and community stakeholders.
In Bedford, community policing recognizes the shared responsibility and connection between the police and the community in making Bedford one of the safest Towns in New Hampshire.
Community policing in Bedford encourages problem solving and preventative strategies in a partnership between citizens and the Police Department; working together, in a shared dialog, designed to reduce crime, reduce the fear of crime, improve the quality of life in Bedford and to pro-actively solve community problems together.
The Bedford Police Department is committed to the community and shares this commitment through its relationship with our residents through our Community Policing Programs, designed to reach all segments of Bedford.
This partnership jointly identifies community safety issues; determines resources; and applies innovative strategies designed to create and sustain a healthy, safe and vibrant Town.
In Bedford, the Community Policing Division, part of the Department’s Patrol Division, consists of four segments; Senior Citizens, Youth and Young Adults; Business/Retail and Neighborhoods. Each of these four segments, working together, will reach everyone in the Town of Bedford, including those who reside elsewhere but own a business or work in Bedford.
On an annual basis, the Department develops a Community Policing Program that governs and guides the Department’s resources as well as sets goals and objectives. Each and every community policing based program must have a crime prevention element, safety and awareness theme or address a specific quality of life problem within the targeted segment. In this fashion, the community becomes engaged in preventing crime and addressing public safety or quality of life issues in a transparent dialog with the Department.
The following summarizes our Community Policing Program:
What is Community Policing?
• Collaboration between the police and the community that identifies and solves community problems in an organizational method to provide more effective police services to the community.
The Police Department’s Role:
• Preserving public safety and a healthy quality of life in the community.
• Building, strengthening, and maintaining long-term relationships with the community we serve.
• Focus on issues of ongoing concern and provide continuity of service to the community.
The Community’s Role:
• Participate in programs and work with Police Department staff and other to identify problems, prioritize concerns, and develop solutions.
• Actively partner with the police to keep the community a safe place to live.
Community Policing Segments:
• Senior Citizen
• Neighborhood Watch
• Business and Retail
Here are some examples of what our Community Policing Program delivers:
• Identify all senior based communities and those living in residential neighborhoods for outreach and dialog.
• Education: Focus on crimes that target the older population (i.e. Identity theft, fraud and phone scams)
• Inform about support groups services available to the community.
• Act by implementing the “Are You Ok” Program:
-Free telephone reassurance program
-For senior citizens who are permanently, temporarily disabled, medically infirm or homebound
-Does not replace or supplant other medical alert system such as Life Alert or Life Line
-Peace of mind for family and friends
-Application packets and more information available at the Bedford Police Department
• Identify with young adults by building relationships with the youth of our community
• Educate Story time at the daycares and schools
• Inform youth about risk and safety through our annual bicycle rodeo to include demonstrations by the Bedford Police mountain bike officers, riding course, bike inspections, helmet safety.
• ACT by participating in after school sports programs with police officers and young adults.
• Identify the crime prevention program that enlists the active participation of residents in operation with law enforcement to reduce crime, solve problems and improve the quality of life in the community.
• Educate by helping the residents to recognize and report crimes and suspicious activity.
• Inform Tips on protecting your neighbors family and property
• Inform Tips on protecting your neighbors family and property
• Act Establish watch groups
• Keep community informed through social media (i.e. BCTV, Nixle, Twitter and the Bedford Police website)
Business and Retail
• Identify and meet with new businesses, obtain contact information and address any safety concerns they may have
• Educate business and retail staff about different crimes that occur within retail and other types of businesses.
• Inform and share information and intelligence through quarterly meetings with Loss Prevention specialists.
• Act by conducting training on response procedures; investigative procedures and workplace violence.
HELP KEEP AN EYE ON BEDFORD – SEE SOMETHING – SAY SOMETHING
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
• Report any suspicious or out of the ordinary activity to law enforcement
• Stay alert and tuned in to your surroundings, wherever you are
• If you’re coming or going after dark ark in well-lit area that will still be well-lit when you return.
• Try to plan your visits to an automatic teller during the day, rather than after dark
• Learn about warning signs that your child might be involved with drugs or gangs
• Teach your child internet safety tips. The people they talk to online might not be who they say they are
• Make sure all doors to the outside have good, sturdy locks
• Trim any bushes or trees that hide doors or windows. Keep ladders, tools, toys, and recreational equipment inside when you’re not using them
• If you hear a noise that sounds like someone breaking in or moving around, quietly call the police and wait calmly until they arrive. If you can leave safely, do so. Otherwise lock yourself in the room you are in
Division Supervisor: Lt. Michael Bernard
Community Policing Coordinator: Sergeant Kyle Thrasher
Senior Citizens: Officer Rob Lavoie , and Communication Specialist Nina Malley
Youth: Sergeant Jessica Humphrey
Neighborhood Watch: Officer Amy Champagne, Officer Stefan Swiadas
Business and Retail: Officer Danielle Nightingale
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