Coffee officers file photo

Lt. Eric Hoskinson of the Ohio University Police Department is seen chatting at a Coffee with a Cop event in this file photo. OUPD has introduced a “Poker Chip Challenge” to encourage more engagement with the community.

Note: This story appears in the Sunday, Oct. 20 newspaper on Page A3.

The Ohio University Police Department employs a chief, two captains, four lieutenants, a trio of detectives and 17 officers — not to mention two police canines, Brody and Alex.

A new initiative called the Poker Chip Challenge wants local residents and students to meet every single one of them.

Each of these members of law enforcement have unique “poker chips” featuring their names and badge numbers. As civilians encounter them — patrolling campus or at local events — they can ask for a chip.

People are encouraged to collect as many chips as possible, with the goal being to foster engagement between the department and the community.

“We are continually trying to find ways to encourage people to get to know the police officers working in their community,” said OUPD Lt. Tim Ryan, who has been involved in other such engagement opportunities like BQ on the Bricks.

Anyone who collects the entire set will be given a free display case for them. An Ohio University freshman named Quentin Kurtz is said to be the first to have collected the whole set.

The OUPD staff list is available online at ohio.edu/police/staff.

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