Patrol Group Places Priority on Protection During CWS


For another week, Omaha plays host to thousands of baseball fans from across the United States during the College World Series. After this weekend's violence, some may have been put on edge.

On Sunday, when asked about Saturday's violence, Omaha Police Chief Todd Schmaderer gave this response. "We have tremendous amount of police presence around the College World Series, if you look at that event over the years, it is a very safe environment, historically. I would submit to all our visitors, that, we take the college world series very seriously and historically it's always safe."

Near 16th and Cuming Streets, is a sort-f invisible boundary, where the two block radius around TD Ameritrade Park extends where Omaha Police are charged with patrolling and protecting. It’s also where the Omaha Coalition of Citizen Patrols picks up the next six blocks.

It doesn't mean however, patrol units are not nearby, only that OCCP units specifically watch two to eight blocks around the stadium.

Veteran patroller Bill Hanes let Channel Six News tag along during his patrol Saturday night around the stadium. The same night a “John Doe”, police say, went on a shooting rampage in South Omaha.

Hanes kept a well-trained, close eye out. "If we see anything suspicious, we are not police officers, we don't want to be police officers, we want to notify, we call 911 and report the event and then we get out of the area and let the police do their job,” Hanes said.

The objective is to supplement Omaha Police Officers. "They can only cover so much and we can get on the outskirts, let them concentrate on the stadium for the CWS, for the surrounding two blocks and then we are on the outskirts of that,” Hanes said.

Saturday night’s patrol took a turn north of the stadium. "We are primarily looking at parked cars on streets and non-secured parking lots," Hanes said.

Currently, 500 volunteers make up 40 different patrols across the city. But what really brings Hanes back, year after year, dating back to the years at Rosenblatt, to patrol during the CWS?

"Criminals are stupid, but they are cunning and they will do anything they can to commit the crime that they want to commit," Hanes said.


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