Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, Acting Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood, Hampden County Sheriff Nick Cocchi and Executive Director of Parks, Recreation and Building Management (PBRM) are pleased to announce a partnership that ensures increased public safety to visitors of Springfield’s Forest Park.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno stated, “As we have done with retired Sheriff Mike Ashe and now Sheriff Nick Cocchi, we have expanded our innovative partnership from facilities and grounds maintenance to now dedicated Forest Park patrols by the Sheriff’s Department under the auspices of Acting Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood.”
Anticipated start and end dates and Monday, April 22nd to Tuesday, October 1st. During this period, two Deputy Sheriffs will patrol Forest Park in Hampden County Sheriff’s Department (HCSD) marked cruisers. Shift times are 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., with two Deputy Sheriffs per shift. The HCSD deputies will report to Acting Commissioner Clapprood. There is no cost to the City, SPD or HCSD.
Mayor Sarno continued, “I am so appreciative of the continued partnership and generosity of Sheriff Cocchi’s community-based approach. I’d also like to extend my sincere thanks to labor union presidents Officer Joe Gentile and Captain Brian Keenan for their cooperative efforts in this joint venture. We have a beautiful overall park system, especially with our crown jewel, the Olmsted-designed Forest Park and we want to keep it that way, enjoyable to all families, who come from near and far.”
Acting Commissioner Clapprood stated, “Citizen safety is of the utmost importance at all of our city parks. This summer due to attrition and prior to our next Academy class graduating we appreciate Sheriff Cocchi and the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department stepping up to supplement our patrols at Forest Park. This will ensure that families will continue to have safe and enjoyable visits to our most popular outdoor attraction in the city.”
“When the Mayor calls, we answer and provide any assistance we can, as we do for each of the 23 cities and towns in Hampden County. And we are happy to be working with the Springfield Police Department and the City of Springfield on this initiative. Through teamwork alongside the Springfield Police, we know it’s going to be a great summer in Forest Park,” Sheriff Nick Cocchi said.
“The Springfield Parks Department is thrilled to be partnering with the Springfield Police Department and the Hampden County Sherriff’s Department. The enforcement of the parks rules and regulations ensure everyone visiting the parks has the opportunity to enjoy the beauty and serenity of the park system. Over the past year, the Springfield Parks have received over a $10.0 million dollar investment and the park patrols will be a welcome addition to secure the beauty of our parks and be a resource to our visitors,” said Patrick Sullivan, Executive Director of Parks, Buildings & Recreation Management.