Civilian Observer Program
Ride Along Program
Any person who would like to accompany a Yuma County Sheriff's Office Deputy on patrol must complete a Civilian Observer Program Application, which includes a “hold harmless agreement”.
To be eligible to participate in the YCSO Ride Along Program, the following requirements must be met:
- Must be at least eighteen (18) years of age. People between the age of fourteen (14) and seventeen (17) years may participate in the Ride Along Program if they are active members of the Yuma County Sheriff’s Office Explorer Program. Explorers under the age of eighteen (18) years of age must have a notarized parent/guardian signature granting permission to participate in the YCSO Civilian Observer Program (Included in the bottom portion of the Civilian Observer Program General Release Form).
- Must read, understand and sign a General Release (waiver of liability) form.
- Must comply with all written and verbal instructions during the ride along.
- Must not have exceeded six (6) ride alongs during a twelve (12) month period and/or not to exceed two (2) rides per month.
- Must be of "sound character."
- Must not have been suspended from the program at any time.
Ride Along Rules & Regulations
All observers shall abide by the following rules and regulations (a copy will be attached to all applications).
Failure to comply with these rules and regulations will result in the Observer’s removal from the Patrol vehicle and all further requests to participate in the Ride Along Program will be denied.
- No Firearms: No firearms or weapons of any kind may be carried by an observer. An Arizona POST Certified Peace Officer who is currently employed by another law enforcement agency may carry their standard service sidearm.
- Terminating the Ride: The ride may be terminated at the discretion of the officer or supervisor for any reason. Observers may request that the ride be terminated and the officer will comply as soon as practical under the circumstances.
- No Involvement in Enforcement: Observers shall not become involved in any law enforcement situation unless they are directed to do so by the officer. Observers will comply with the officer’s instructions at all times to ensure the safety of the observer, the officer and others.
- Proper Attire: Observers shall be neat, well-groomed and properly attired during the observation ride. All observers shall wear sports shirts or blouses with collars, and appropriate pants or trousers. Denim jeans may be worn if they are clean and without holes, tears or patches. The officer with whom the observer is riding may refuse to allow an observer to ride if the officer determines that the observer is inappropriately dressed.
- Proper Conduct: If the officer with whom the observer is riding determines that the observer is impaired due to the consumption of alcohol or other substances, the officer may refuse to permit the observer to participate in the program.
- Confidentiality: All information, either visual, oral or written, obtained by the observer as a result of his/her participation in the program is confidential. Observers will not disseminate, disclose, broadcast or publish such information. Breach of such confidentiality may result in criminal or civil sanctions.
- Boat Patrol Ride Along: All observers requesting to ride with a Boat Patrol Officer must be able to swim and must wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved personal flotation device which will be provided by the Sheriff's Office.
- Scheduling Rides/Check-in: All ride-alongs must be scheduled with the Patrol Shift Supervisor at least 48 hours in advance of the ride. Observers should be at the Sheriff's Office at least 15 minutes prior to the scheduled ride along time. Observers who elect to ride with a Boating Officer or an officer in an outlying area should be at the outlying sub-station at least 15 minutes prior to the ride along time.
- Limited Number of Observation Rides: Observers are limited to six (6) observation rides during a twelve (12) month period, not to exceed two (2) rides per month.
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