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Hancock County News

Greenfield PD put added focus on bus safety

Greenfield Police Chief Jeff Rasche finds himself in a bit of a dilemma. 


But he’s not complaining one bit.

The veteran law enforcement official knows that case load and call volumes typically go up during the summer months, but such has not been the case for the city of Greenfield this year.


“Case load and call volumes typically go up during the summer months when school is out however we have not seen a real change in volume. Knock on wood,” Rasche told Giant FM.


With that said, Rasche and the department have been busy tracking down robbery and drug suspects, but the attention has taken a new focus in recent weeks as school is back underway in Greenfield.


“We still continue to monitor what is going on in the community. Our job is a living, changing environment and we strive to keep ahead of trends, so we can be proactive rather than reactive,” Rasche said.


One area the department has been proactive in has been school bus safety and enforcement of Senate Bill 2, which states drivers who recklessly pass a stopped school bus can be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, carrying a punishment of up to a year in jail and a $5,000 fine. Under the law, the penalties get tougher if the driver injures or kills someone while passing a stopped school bus with its arm out.  Furthermore, a judge can suspend a license for 90 days for stop arm violations or up to a year if the person is a repeat offender.


Rasche told Giant FM his department has been aggressively targeting violators through unmarked cars and word of mouth.


“We have been aggressively targeting motorist passing school buses using unmarked cars and relying on what the bus drivers are telling us,” Rasche said.


In addition, Rasche said this is also the time of the year where his department sees an increase in crimes against children.


“This time of year, we also will see an increase in cases involving children. When they return to school, children who have been victimized or in need of services will often confide with a teacher or other school administrator. Then, under the state law, the school is required to contact DCS and law enforcement,” Rasche said.