Pasco Police take crash course in Spanish to better serve public

U.S. Border Patrol officers train local law enforcement on how to speak Spanish.

PASCO, Wash.- Pasco Police and Franklin County Sheriff's Deputies are spending this entire week, learning Spanish.

17 Pasco Police officers and 3 Franklin County Sheriff's Deputies are almost done with the course. U.S. Border Patrol officers from New Mexico are leading the 40-hour training. While officers here at home interact with Spanish-speakers daily, many don't speak the language.

Sgt. Scott Warren says, "It's a tool that our non-bilingual officers can use to help communicate with the public, the community that may not know English as well."

That's why Pasco Police Sergeant Scott Warren says they're making an effort to learn what they can for everyday interactions.

Sgt. Scott Warren says, "On the road, you know when they go to a domestic. they make a traffic stop."

And practice makes perfect. Every officer took turns putting their classroom learning to the test.

The idea is to break down the language barrier and build up trust in the community.

Sgt. Scott Warren says, "Why wouldn't you do it? It's like a camera in the car, body cam, it's just a tool and this is a tool to help us to our job and to help them understand and feel they can trust us, because they can."

The course ends Friday with a test.

Pasco Police say it'll be up to officers to stay fresh on what they learned. They anticipate having more training in the future.

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