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Who’s Who in Lincoln

A portrait of a person who is part of your community
By: Cheri March
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Name: David Orth Age: 35 Occupation: Lincoln police officer Residence: Lincoln area Family: His two daughters, his girlfriend and her three sons When did you join the bike patrol? “Actually, we just started the bike patrol last month. We have three founding members and hope to expand.” What’s the benefit of having bicycle officers? “Basically, it’s to keep the department’s vision of community-oriented policing. When we get out on our bikes, we have more contact with the public. We’re able to be at special events like parades, the Tour de Lincoln, Thursday night markets. We’d like to ride out on the bike trails and go to safety fairs. Eventually we might do saturation patrols if there is a problem with high crime in a particular area. Bikes are more effective at getting around within a smaller geographic area. But so far, the bike patrol is part-time; the officers also work patrol in their cars.” What’s the most challenging part of the job? “We’re really in the beginning stages now, but I worked on bike patrol at a previous department, and obviously it’s very physically challenging. You have to ride several hours a day, when it’s hot or cold out. You don’t have the resources you do in a car. You’re pretty much limited to what’s on your bike or carried on your body.” How about the most fun part? “You get to interact with people. In a car, sure, someone can wave you down. But on a bike, you’re a lot more accessible, you can talk to people. And riding a bike is kind of fun in itself.” How long have you been in Lincoln? “I’ve worked here for about a year and a half and lived here for three years. I kind of like the small-town atmosphere because I grew up in a small town. It’s growing, but it still isn’t that busy.” What do you do in your spare time? “I like sports, working out and I’m a NASCAR fan. Dale Earnhardt Jr. is my driver. I go to a lot of the races – I’ve been to California Speedway, Infinion, Las Vegas, Talladega and Daytona. What’s your favorite movie or TV show? “I spend most of my time watching what (my kids) want to watch. It’s family time.” How would you describe yourself? “I think I’m fun to be around and easygoing.” When would you say you’re happiest? “The times I enjoy most are hanging out with family, whether it’s sitting at home watching TV or on vacation. Just spending time with them.”