Missoula Police Department adds new reserve officer program

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The Missoula Police Department swore in four new officers to be part of the recently established reserve officer program last week.

TOM BAUER, Missoulian Zoe Buchli

The Missoula Police Department swore in four new officers last week to be part of the recently established reserve officer program.

These officers will assist in Missoula’s municipal courtrooms to maintain a safe environment, and will also provide security for City Council and committee meetings.

The program divides court security responsibilities among reserve officers whose job duties are specific to municipal courts. This mitigates the need for full-time patrol officers to put their hours into city court security and allows them to focus on patrol functions, Missoula Police Cpt. Rich Stepper said.

“The presence of reserve officers in the courts provides consistency and reduces the number of officers being pulled off of the streets to assist in the courts,” Stepper said.

Montana law requires bailiffs in municipal courts to either be police or reserve officers — the Missoula Police Department has always had an officer sitting in the

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