Serving the community since 1970

Officer Cook: Building trust and service

With the launch of the new Wasco Police Department, the men and women in uniform leading the force are passionate and committed to protecting and serving the community. Police Officer Anthony Cook is one of them.

"We are here to protect you, to serve you and we are here to provide the services that you asked us for," he said in an interview this week.

Cook thinks that adaptability is the most important quality for a police officer to possess. "Laws are always changing, community opinion is always changing and law enforcement policies are always changing. And we as officers must navigate those changes and still provide quality service."

As a newcomer to the community, he plans to engage with and build trust among residents. "I plan to continue to reach out to community members and business owners on a personal basis, not through my job as an officer but in random encounters on or off duty – and continue to grow those personal relationships with community members."

He stated that it is the leadership and the officers that that lhey brought onto the force which sets the WPD apart from others. "They all do a great job. Tthey teach us, they guide us and they all have a wealth of knowledge."

It has been a journey for him to get to this point as an officer. "When I was trying to get into the police academy, it was very competitive. I applied four or five times until I sponsored myself through the Hanford College of Sequoia Academy. I worked full-time during it, Monday through Thursday at work and Friday, Saturday and Sunday I was at the academy, for 11 months with no vacation and no time off. Just work, school and a family."

He said that Wasco is a small town but doesn't feel small. "Everyone is friendly. You can have a conversation with anyone. They seem very friendly toward law enforcement and happy we are there. You can ask any officer, and they will tell you that on a daily basis, we get thanked for being here and told you guys are doing a great job. We have positive feedback every day."

Cook believes that the main focus of modern policing is community relationships. "It's what our chief {Police Chief Charles Fivecoat] tells us every day, and it should be natural to every officer. "

He added that his values align with what the department wants. "Which are positive services, positive law enforcement contacts and to enforce the laws."

 

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