By Israel Larson, Staff Writer

Every year, PPCC releases an annual security report accessed from the school’s homepage.

In the report the college highlights crimes on campus, how to contact Public Safety (the campus police) the college’s policies for certain actions, as well as all the ways students and staff can report specific crimes.

According to the 2017 report, overall, the campuses are secure with a majority of the police calls involving thefts and minor car collisions.

PPCC is doing well on maintaining a safe, welcoming school and students feel the same way.

“The campuses are in generally safe areas and there’s always police in house, which is never a bad thing. I’d say I definitely feel safe here,” said PPCC student J. Adkins.

“Yes, I do feel safe here. The police are right around the corner,” agreed PPCC student Philip Deshirl.  

PPCC’s police officers are always on the ready and are properly trained for handling any situation.

Officer Susan Barnes, said, “We’re actually certified deputies to El Paso County’s Sheriff’s Office. We would be able to perform our duties anywhere within El Paso County and then of course at the college. Law enforcement is actually a state certification that you get called POST (Peace Officer Standards and Training), so you have to get through all the POST requirements to get your certification.”

Officer Barnes explained that PPCC officers take the rigorous training every year and it mirrors training within a police academy.

Barnes said PPCC’s security team studies firearms, driving, arrest control (takedowns and de-escalation of tense situations). Barnes also said the officers here also do what’s known as CIT (crisis intervention training), which is, she said, “the emotional side of law enforcement.”

Officer Barnes also said students should know that the officers around campus are approachable and willing to help in any way they can.

If a student is feeling unsafe, campus officers are more than willing to escort that person to their class or to their car.

“Just call. That’s what we’re here for. You never know what’s going on in people’s lives – we’re not gonna judge you,” said Officer Barnes.

Photo: Officer Ron Salas, at the Downtown Campus, off to make his rounds.