BYU police try enforcing with kindness

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Just like a normal day, Gabriel Hess, a senior studying philosophy, walked his bike on campus during class break. Suddenly, a BYU police officer approached and stopped Hess. The officer handed him a special ticket, a coupon for a free ice cream scoop at the Creamery, and said “Thank you for walking your bike during class break.”

Like Hess, many BYU students have experienced the encouragement campaign from the BYU Police Department since the beginning of this semester.

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Officer Craig Merrill informs graduate student Ryan Bartlett of the campus bicycle regulations on Tuesday at Brigham Square.
Provo city and BYU have rules and regulations for bicycles that students who use bikes, especially freshmen, should be aware of. Some of the important rules are in flyers that students can easily find in the BYU Police Department at 2120 JKB. According to the rules and regulations, BYU students must never ride on a sidewalk during class breaks on BYU campus, ride double or more than two abreast and attach bikes to trees, handrails or other fixtures.

 

 

“We’ve tried a couple approaches, ” said Lieutenant Arnold Lemmon, in the BYU Police Department. “We try to warn them the first time in some cases. Once they’ve been warned if we catch them again, we’ll give them a university citation.”

Another approach the department uses is to reward and encourage good behavior. The police department prefers to do things which are positive like the reward approach, Lemmon said.

“When we see someone walking their bike during class change, we’d like to reward that if we can,” Lemmon said. “We said ‘Here, thanks. Thanks for obeying the rule.'”

This approach not only encourages students to keep obeying the rules but also helps the police department improve their image to the public, Lemmon said.

“This is a good department, ” Lemmon said. “There are good people who work here and we often have to do things that aren’t really pleasant.”

The positive reinforcement changes the perception about the police department, Hess said.

“This is great that they have positive enforcement,” Hess said. “It’s not like the police try to make trouble for you.”

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