The Grand Ledge Police Department has been utilizing bicycles for patrol since May 1997. The department started with two Giant brand mountain bikes (which are still available) and in 2006 the department purchased two Fuji brand bicycles. While the bike patrol has been most visible during events like parades and festivals, it is used in everyday police work.
Bike patrol allows officers to accomplish several goals while on duty. A frequently cited benefit is the increased community relations. Bike officers are much more approachable than officers in patrol cars. Crime prevention is another area that is enhanced. Bike officers are able to hear and see a much larger variety of things happening around them. Bike officers are also able to observe activity more unobtrusively than officers in a patrol car. They have a better chance of witnessing criminal activity without being seen themselves.
The bike patrol is only used as supplemental patrol in Grand Ledge as maintaining officers for emergency response is the first priority. However when staffing allows an officer to hit the road on two wheels we have had many successes in keeping Grand Ledge a safe community. Everything from dealing with curfew violators to felony arrests have been completed by officers on bike patrol.