The Patrol Division is the largest organizational unit within the
Skokie Police Department and serves as the front line in the fulfillment of the Department’s mission. In addition to responding to both emergency and non-emergency calls for service from the public, Patrol Officers are encouraged to act proactively as community problem solvers. During 2016, Patrol Officers initiated or responded to over 40,000 total calls for service involving criminal offenses, traffic crashes, alarm activations, disturbances, traffic complaints, and other miscellaneous events.
The Patrol Division is divided into three Watches, or shifts, in order to provide continuous 24-hour
police service. Each Watch is supervised by a Commander and several Sergeants, and the number of Officers allocated to each Watch varies based upon historical and anticipated activity levels. Further, the Village is currently divided into four zones comprised of a total of nine beats. The beat boundaries were established to create balanced workloads for Beat Officers who are assigned to the same beat for a full year. This Beat Officer Program permits Officers to be more familiar with their areas of responsibility, and to more readily develop a partnership with residents to improve the quality of life in individual neighborhoods.
The Department supplements traditional patrol units with specialized units and assignments staffed with Officers specifically trained to perform ancillary functions. Many of these functions will be described in subsequent text.