The Patrol Division is lead by Captain Douglas R. Watson, who reports directly to the Deputy Chief of Police. The division is comprised of three shifts that are supervised by a lieutenant and at least one sergeant. Officers assigned to the Winchester Police Department are normally the first responders to calls for service. The goals of the Patrol Officer are to prevent and suppress crime, protect lives and property, apprehend and prosecute offenders, and try to preserve peace.
The Patrol Officer is responsible for exerting every effort to satisfy the needs of citizens requesting service, assistance, or information and when necessary make reports of crimes, vehicular accidents, and incidents. Patrol Officers familiarize themselves with their assigned areas and conduct diligent patrol, focusing on the prevention of crime, and building positive community relationships.
As the first responders, Patrol Officers conduct a thorough initial investigation, collect evidence, and record data which will aide in the identification, apprehension, and prosecution of offenders and the recovery of property.
The Patrol Division also consists of several specialized fields including K-9, Bicycle Patrol, School Resource Officers, and Animal Control Officers. An assignment to any of these specialized fields is voluntary and requires special schooling and training.