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Heliodoro Martinez
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 Volunteer/ Reserve Police Officers must complete the State approved Basic Peace Officer Certification course which is now over 600 hours.  Most do this training at their own expense through The University of Houston, The Houston Community College System or at other area colleges.  Several volunteer Deputies are retired police officers.  Deputies at Precinct 6 are required to be bonded and put in 24 hours of service per month in addition to State required in-service classes.  Deputies must pay for their own uniforms, weapon and leather gear.  A benefit for these volunteers is the experience, free or low cost training and a chance to build a good resume while contributing to the community.  Many volunteers move on to full time paid positions at area departments.    Each team of Deputies are supervised by a Sergeant.

How to become a Reserve Peace Officer

PAROLE VIOLATOR TASK FORCE (ZEBRA SQUAD):  In 1991 there were about 22,000 parolees in Harris County.  Of those, about 6,000 were violators of their parole conditions.  Between 60 and 70 percent of parole violators are repeat criminal offenders.  No Law Enforcement agency was tracking down these offenders.  The Texas Parole Board was issuing between 70 and 120 felony parole violation warrants each week.  The first Task Force was formed to track down these offenders using 20 trained volunteer Deputies and returning violators to prison.  The Squad became known as the "Zebra" Squad.  From 1991 to date, the Zebra Squad has arrested well over 2,000 parole violators.  The Squad received a great deal of attention from newspapers and TV programs.  Other departments copied the Zebra Squads' operation using paid officers.  The Zebra Squad is still in operation today using dedicated volunteer Deputies.

OTHER DUTIES OF VOLUNTEER DEPUTIES:  The EWI Enforcement Team patrols the streets of east Houston on Friday, Saturday and most holidays looking for intoxicated drivers.  These Deputies are trained on DWI arrests and some are trained to operate the intoxilyzer machine.  The Community Service Division provides service to schools, churches and local citizen groups as well as coordinating baseball Little Leagues.  There are 11 Deputies who own and use police motorcycles in Pct. 6.  Merchants in this east community joined together to provide police bicycles for Reserve Officers to patrol stores and shops.  This program is expanding to other areas of the precinct.  All of these programs and others now ongoing are possible because of Volunteer/Reserve peace officers.

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