If you live in San Marcos or Valley Center or in any of unincorporated areas of Escondido you have probably seen the Sheriff’s Senior Patrol (SVP) driving through the various streets and parking areas of your community. Have you ever wondered what it is they do? Do you know about all of the free services the Senior Patrol can provide for you and your fellow residents? These are completely zero cost services that assist the Sheriff’s Deputies to ensure your personal safety, that of your relatives and friends as well as the safety of your property.
Do you know about the ‘You are Not Alone’ (YANA) program? Members of the SVP, when requested, will either stop by or call anyone who is homebound and can benefit from a short daily visit with a trained Senior Patrol member to just say hello and also to see that all is well.
When you are on vacation, the Senior Patrol, again when requested, will visit your home each Monday through Friday and check that all is well with your property.
They will also call for a Deputy if the Senior Patrol member sees a concern.
Your Senior Patrol also is on alert for children or pets left unattended in a car. A Sheriff’s Deputy will be called to the location if action may be needed.
As they walk through parking areas they watch for articles of value left inside vehicles that tempt thieves. If something is seen, an SVP member will notify the owner to be more cautious.
In fact this program has been particularly effective in reducing the number of thefts from parked vehicles at the various shopping centers in the areas.
People who park illegally in Handicap Spaces can be ticketed by the Senior Patrol as part of their daily responsibility. Have you reported a vehicle seemingly abandoned.
It could be the Senior Patrol that tags the offender.
As the extra “Eyes and Ears” of the Sheriff’s Department, the Senior Patrol is alert for any unusual activities they see while passing through neighborhoods and will immediately call for a Deputy to investigate.
You will see the Senior Patrol assisting the Sheriff’s Deputies by doing traffic control duty at accident scenes or working at many of the events sponsored by the Cities of San Marcos, Escondido or Valley Center.
The Senior Patrol deploys several vehicles each Monday through Friday, staffed with two members per car, covering San Marcos, Valley Center and all of the unincorporated parts of Escondido.
A Senior Patrol car also goes on tour on weekends.
Every Senior Patrol member is a volunteer. And each one spends a full two weeks in a dedicated training program along with an additional field training period before becoming active.
If you are 50 or older, live in Escondido or San Marcos and would like to join the SVP and participate as a Senior Patrol member to help your community then please contact Michael Flitterman at 760-216-2527 or Mike Gardiner at 760-510-5291 to discuss your interest and start an application. If you live in Valley Center please contact Alan Kirkpatrick at 760-751-4405 to get started.
If you have any questions or want to make use of any of the services for yourself or others, just stop by the San Marcos Sheriff’s Station located at 182 Santar Place, San Marcos or The Valley Center Sheriff’s Station at 28201 N. Lake Wohlford Rd (next to the Fire Station).