THE ROANOKE TIMES, 19 MARCH 2017, FEAT. PROF. SETH STOUGHTON:
One security service that many police departments offer, but that often goes unnoticed, is off-duty work.
Officers direct traffic near construction sites. They greet people coming in and out of bars. They walk the Berglund Center’s concourse during concerts.
They offer additional security at stores, serving as a deterrent to would-be thieves. Last month, when someone photographed a uniformed Roanoke officer outside Wal-Mart on Dale Avenue Southeast apparently sleeping in his patrol car and posted it on Facebook, people chimed in with a range of responses. Some expressed sympathy that officers work long hours, others questioned whether he was on duty — and, if not, what were the policies on uniforms and vehicles?