Resource Officer Keeps Watch at Local Schools

Corporal+police+officer+Rick+Halverson+%0Astands+next+to+his+SUV+outside+the+building.+--Adam+Bensimhon

Corporal police officer Rick Halverson stands next to his SUV outside the building. --Adam Bensimhon

Corporal police officer Rick Halverson  stands next to his SUV outside the building. --Adam Bensimhon
Corporal police officer Rick Halverson
stands next to his SUV outside the building. –Adam Bensimhon

As students have walked through the halls of RHS for the past two and a half years, Corporal police officer Rick Halverson has been seen at some point throughout the school day.

According to www.mymcpnews.com, Cpl. Halverson is part of the School Resource Officer (SRO) Program, serving as a liaison between the Rockville police department and several high schools for various concerns and incidents.

“If there is a situation that requires police intervention then I’m the person to offer suggestions or take police action if it’s called for,” Cpl. Halverson said. “I’ve also sat in on a few mediations to try and stop someone from making a bad decision.”

This is Cpl. Halverson’s 24th year of being a police officer. He was inspired to become an officer due to his love of helping people.

“I hate hearing about another person taking advantage of someone,” Cpl. Halverson said. “There’s no better feeling than solving a crime and arresting the person responsible for doing it.”

Unlike some police officers who are stationed at only one high school, Cpl. Halverson works at RHS, Richard Montgomery HS and Julius West MS, rotating among all three schools throughout the day. Cpl. Halverson is at RHS in the morning, at lunch or the end of the day. However, there are some days when he is present for the whole day.

Principal Billie-Jean Bensen said, “I don’t feel like [RHS is] being left out because we share with Richard Montgomery, because [Cpl. Halverson] really makes an effort to be present here at some point every day.”

Bensen believes Cpl. Halverson is a positive force in the building. “He knows the kids. He wants to know the kids. We’ll stand and talk in the morning. He will say “who’s that?a�� and I’ve seen him introduce himself,” Bensen said.

Cpl. Halverson is also known by security to go out of his way to help students and staff members find lost or stolen items. For example, Cpl. Halverson has gotten security codes for misplaced and lost cellphones and helped return them to their owner.

With the recent bomb threats at Northwood HS, Northwest HS and Richard Montgomery HS, junior Sophia Scarano believes that schools having a full-time armed police officer would decrease the possibility of violence. She said the presence of an armed officer would provide the “authoritative counterbalance to any and all threatened and actual crimes.”