SPRINGFIELD TWP.  Springfield Police Det. Brian Troyer warned residents about home invasions, particularly in the Sawyerwood area, during the Springfield Township Board of Trustees meeting on Feb. 9.

Troyer said the thefts range from storage sheds to houses. Burglary victims often feel violated as their personal space has been invaded. Troyer pointed out that residential burglaries statistically occur during the day while families are at work or school. The most common entry is a hard kick to a door. He said it is unfortunate, but it is difficult to catch burglars in the act since unoccupied homes with easy or concealed access and quick escape routes are targeted.

Burglars are generally looking for jewelry, cash, laptops, CD/DVD players, game consoles, watches, guns, tools and small electronic devices, Troyer said, adding that burglars generally "grab and go" where they take what they can and get out. He reminded residents to keep their valuables secured.

Troyer asks that residents of the Sawyerwood area, as well as all residents, be vigilant.

"Make sure you lock doors, use deadbolts and chains on your doors," he said. "Someone breaking in will not take a long time to get in, they will move on. Barriers like deadbolts will help to deter them. Take some time and write down serial numbers for items, especially larger items. Keep the numbers in your wallet or a safe place. If you see something that just does not look right, report, call the department. People don't want to bother the police; please bother us. We want you to call."

This does not just apply to the Sawyerwood area, Troyer said.

"If you see anything that does not look right give us a call. I can't stress that enough," he said.

Residents can call 9-1-1, the police non emergency number at 330-733-1061, main office number 330-733-1061 or contact the department anonymously at detspd@neo.rr.com.

VASP members recognized

Community Policing Officer Dan Rafferty recognized some of the outstanding members of  VASP (Volunteer Auxiliary Springfield Police) during the meeting. He spoke about how proud he is to talk about the community and all of the great things the department and VASP do.

He introduced Emery Pitman, who volunteered to organize VASP for the Rock the Docks event.

"He puts in more time to this community than you will ever know," said Rafferty.

He also talked about Bobby Krohmer, who took over the Fill-A-Cruiser program this year. Krohmer added more hours for collecting toys and money.

"He was out there all day and we do 12 hours days," Rafferty said. "He makes sure he gets every dollar he can to help out our community."

He continued by introducing Dustin Boswell, who is the business manager for Springfield Local Schools. Rafferty said Boswell has helped to build the relationships with the schools and he is always there to let the department and VASP members into the schools for many programs.

Rafferty thanked Ray Anderson for his work to help with vehicles. Anytime they call him to help in some way, Anderson is there, Rafferty said.

Finally, Rafferty introduced Larry Kovach, saying he volunteers every hour of everyday.

"I can call him up for anything and he is always there. He took on the security for all the concerts this year," said Rafferty.

Police Chief David Hoover said the department appreciates the time and effort VASP members put in.

Department reports

During his report, Hoover said the department has received a lot of calls about vandalizing and stealing from the Edwin Shaw property that is owned by Summit County. Hoover warned that effective immediately, the county is going to prosecute anyone who is found on that property.

"If we catch you there, you will be charged," he said.

Fire Chief Vic Wincik reported for 2016 the department responded to 2,500 alarms of which 67 were mutual aid give to other cities, 64 were related to fire and explosion and 2,185 rescue or medical assists.

Road Superintendent Ted Weinsheimer asked residents to be aware of parking their cars in the road when there is snow. It is a problem the deppartment has been running into when plowing the roads. Also, it has had calls for blocked drainage pipes partly due to people leaving leaves in their ditches.

"Try to help us out and keep the leaves out of the roadside ditches," he said.

Approved business included:

- Removed Police Officer Eric Glass from full time probation, effective Feb. 11.

- Participation in the 2017 pavement maintenance and/or marketing program with the Summit County regional collaboration projects to complete the 2017 Springfield Township Road Program.

- Extended the maintenance agreement for Pontius Street between Lake and Springfield Township, effective May 1 through April 30, 2027.

- The 2016 Township Highway Mileage System Mileage is 70.071 miles, per ODOT. The numbers are used in calculating the township's share of the State Motor Vehicle Fuel taxes.

- The nuisance abatement for 947 Mohawk Trail was canceled.

- The property at 1027 Mohawk Trail was approved for abatement for trash/debris/mowing. 

VASP report

VASP coordinator Linda Lohr gave the organization's 2016 report:

- The volunteers gave 2,494.75 hours of their time to the community.

- Those hours, at minimum wage, would equal to more than $20,000.

- Some of the things it did to help the police department and community were: help out at community events, school events, read to kindergartners, help with Easter egg hunts, fire department breakfast, concerts, Memorial Day Parade, Safety Town and the Car Show. It did 178 senior checks, 17 house checks for vacation and one house watch for funeral.

Parks and Recreation Director Doug thanked VASP. He said the township would not be able to have the events they hold without VASP's participation.

Foltz gave a run down on events for 2017:

April 22: Lakefront path and playground dedication

May 6: Bark in the Park

June 2: Friday night concerts begin

Aug. 25: Food trucks on the Lake

September 16: Steak on the Lake

September: Car Cruise In on the Lake, date to be announced

Dec. 1: Holiday Lights on the Lake

The next meeting will be held at 8 p.m., Feb. 23 at the Town Hall on Canfield Road.