Port Townsend: Parking patrol just the ticket for four police volunteers

PORT TOWNSEND — That 15 minute parking sign isn’t a suggestion, especially with four of the city’s finest patrolling the downtown streets enforcing parking rules.

They can’t arrest people, but what they do makes all the difference in the world to the officers who are out catching bad guys.

“We do anything we can do to take a load off the shoulders of the police officers,” Port Townsend Volunteer Coordinator Bill Erickson said Wednesday.

Erickson and fellow volunteer officers Richard Dunlap, Earl Hale and David Nelson are sworn in with limited police duties.

They can’t place handcuffs on criminals, nor do they carry weapons, but they can put a ticket on a car parked illegally.

Each puts in about 500 volunteer hours a year.

Combined, that’s about the same as the department receiving a free full-time police officer.

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Matthew Nash/Olympic Peninsula News Group

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