Explorer Scout Program
The Merced Police Department Explorer Scout Program was re-established in June 2000. Presently, the program has 34 members, both men and women, ages 14 to 21 years old. The program is coordinated by Reserve Officer Robert Luna and Sergeant Bobby Chapman.
The goal of the Explorer Program is to expose young people to career opportunities in the Criminal Justice field. The Explorer must complete a 24 hour academy upon joining and are involved in ongoing training throughout their involvement in the program. After completion of the academy the Explorers are eligible to go on ride-alongs with department Officers.
One of the most important components of the program is Community Service . The Explorers have several projects such as Kiddie Land at Applegate Park, Camp Green Meadows Adopt-a-Cabin Summer Project, AT&T Pro Am Golf Tournament, McLane Pacific Bike Race, Beetlejuice Haunted House and The Blues Festival that are annual projects. The Explorers also will work various events in the city such as traffic control at parades, bike races and walkathons. This year for the first time, The Post helped with the Merced County Election process. On average each explorer will accumulate 250 - 800 hours per year in community service time. The Post also has “fun” outings such as ski trips, camping, trap shooting, and BBQ swim parties. Each year the Post hosts an Awards Banquet and Christmas party.
We are proud that many of our past Explorers have pursued a higher education and are currently attending colleges both local and away. The program stresses the importance of an education. Even if the Explorer does not go into the Criminal Justice field, the training and experience he/she receives from the program will help prepare them for other endeavors in life.
KOPS for Kids
Every Christmas, the Merced Police Department and the Merced City Fire Department collect and distribute toys to the underprivileged children in our community. The program is open to families with children 13 and under. The Department gathers new, unwrapped toys beginning in November and then distributes them about a week before Christmas. The Department works with the community and is assisted by merchants in the collection of toys. As part of the KOPS for Kids, the Department also gives away bicycles to underprivileged children. Last year the Department gave away over 100 bicycles that were donated by the Federal Prison System and local businesses in Merced. This is a program that continues to grow each year, benefiting many underprivileged children in Merced.
To register your child for KOPS for kids, please fill out a form at any one of our police stations.
School Resource Officers
In cooperation with the Merced City School District, the Department assigns an officer to each elementary school in the City. The officer’s assignment is to interface with school administration and teaching staff to act as a liaison between the school and the Department. The Department, in conjunction with the Merced Union High School District, also assigns two officers to full time duty at each of the City’s high schools– Merced High School and Golden Valley High School. The officers are involved with the school administration to maintain order on each of the campuses. In addition, they identify “at risk” juveniles and work with them to try to change their behavior. The department also has one full-time officer assigned to Merced County's Valley High School.
Gang Intervention Officers
The department has three Gang Intervention Officers who are responsible for teaching the Gang Resistance Education & Training (GREAT) Program curriculum in each middle school to all sixth and seventh graders. In addition, they are responsible for working a case load of runaway and otherwise “at risk” juveniles who are identified and referred by patrol officers and school officials.