SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Bryan Doran has the uniform, patrol vehicle and gets dispatched. He’s not a sworn Syracuse Police Officer, but a civilian employee. His official title is Community Service Officer.
“My role specifically as a CSO in the patrol division is I answer calls for motor vehicle collisions.” Doran explained. “I respond to parking complaints per the city ordinance, things of that nature.”
He’s the only who works on the road right now, but there are roughly 30 Community Service Officers in the department. They handle administrative tasks and taking reports for lower level offenses.
“We’re starting to branch out to have them do more things, actually, in the community which helps us free up the officers from some of the traditional things that they do,” said Syracuse Police Chief Kenton Buckner.
Doran grew up near the the city’s Valley neighborhood and says he was always interested in civil service. In his spare time, he’s a stand-up comic.
“It spurs ideas sometimes for new material,” Doran added, “Obviously, you don’t want to get too specific because you don’t want to get yourself in trouble, but I think they’re related in some way.”
While CSOs aren’t new, it’s a job that the general public doesn’t always get to see. Doran gets a common question when he’s out.
“They ask me are you an actual police officer,” Doran explained, “Or the same question you asked me, ‘what is your job?'”
He enjoys the job because he gets to interact with people. It’s at a time where police and community relations are sometimes strained. Doran sees it as special opportunity.
“We’re not always there to be the bad guy, we’re not always there to get get people in trouble my job is very much the opposite of that. I show up to help,” Doran said.
If you’re interested in this job Buckner shared some of the qualities that person should have, “Good communication skills, interpersonal skills, the ability to do administrative things, on a computer interacting with the public.
Buckner said eventually he would like to have more CSOs working on all three shifts. When he is looking to hire, the job would be posted on the city’s website.