2 May 2024

Griffith police get on their bikes to connect with residents

| Oliver Jacques
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Two cops on bikes

Sergeant Greg Lynch and Senior Constable Alex Davies get ready to ride to schools. Photo: Oliver Jacques.

Griffith police will be getting on push-bikes for the first time in an attempt to become more accessible to the local community.

The initiative was rolled out last week and is expected to become a more permanent sight around town in the coming months.

“When we’re in police cars, people can’t really stop us and talk,” Sergeant Greg Lynch said.

“On bikes, we’re a lot more approachable. When we went out last Thursday for an hour and a half, we went through the CBD and rode to Bunnings. A lot of people were shocked because they hadn’t seen us on bikes.

“Previously, on a day-to-day basis, you might see police doing a job – we’re now more accessible and available if people want to chat.

“We’ll also be getting on our bikes for the Sikh Games, which is held over the June long weekend. We hope to be able to be on bikes when there are events in town.”

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On Thursday (2 May), Sergeant Lynch did the rounds of schools on his bike with Senior Constable Alex Davies, a youth engagement officer who works in the PCYC Youth Command.

“There are three of us in the Youth Command who go to schools, run programs and mentor youth who need a better connection with police,” Senior Constable Davies said.

“If a school has an issue with fighting, we’ll go in, talk to the youth and explain the legal implications; we let them know what happens if they get a criminal record – like you can’t go overseas.

“We also run events for youths, such as discos and barbecues. If you develop those relationships, we can get them back on track.”

Cars will still be the main mode of transport for police when catching criminals and investigating incidents. But there are occasions when bike travel is preferable.

“We’re not going to bike out to a job on Lake Wyangan, but given the geography of Griffith, you can get to some places quicker on bikes, especially in the CBD where you need to park your car,” Sergeant Lynch said.

“People won’t be able to miss us with our jackets on.”

Bicycle squads have been an integral part of Sydney-based police units for years. Their aim has been to focus on street-level offences such as drug-related matters, property crime and assaults. They also assist with major events and prevent antisocial behaviour.

“It won’t be just Griffith; we’d like to get out to Leeton sometime and to other places,” Sergeant Lynch said.

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Mr Lynch has been in Griffith for almost two years, having been transferred from the small town of Portland near Bathurst when he was promoted to the role of Sergeant.

“It’s a good community; like everywhere, it takes a while to get to know people but once you get involved in sports like soccer, tennis and the gym you make a lot of contacts.”

He’s already developed a reputation as a top tennis player and is one of the favourites to take out the new men’s competition which kicks off on Thursday (2 May).

Senior Constable Alex Davies has worked in the PCYC Youth Command for 10 years, having come to Griffith from Sydney after a stint in Barellan.

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