BREWER, Maine — If you’ve spent some time around the Brewer waterfront in the past month, you may have noticed a different kind of police presence.
The Brewer Police Department recently introduced bicycle patrols. Sgt. Brandon Curtis came up with the idea.
"It's basically to deter crime, improve community relations between the police and the public, and try to be present and visible," Curtis told NEWS CENTER Maine.
So far, four officers in the department have volunteered to join the new unit.
"Officer Curtis asked if I’d be interested in joining the program, and I thought it was a great idea," Sgt. Zachary Caron explained. "When you’re in a cruiser, it’s a lot harder for the public to talk to you. I think being on a bicycle makes it a lot easier to create a better bond with the community."
The Brewer Riverwalk is a popular spot for the community to walk, jog, and get some fresh air. Curtis said the public has responded well to news of the patrols.
"We put a post on social media, and we got a positive response to that," he explained. "People really enjoy us being out here."
Nancy Grahan is one of those people. She spends about nine months out of the year walking along the Brewer waterfront with her dog Rosie. Although she has never felt in danger out on her walks, she said the new bike unit gives her peace of mind.
“A lot of older people walk this waterfront, and a lot of young people run it, but that’s a great idea for Brewer to [add the bike patrols]," Grahan said.