The Pasadena Police Department created a Helicopter Section in 1969. Since that historic day, the department has established itself as a leader in the law enforcement and aviation community. To the right is a picture of the newest member to the Pasadena Police Department Air Support Team.
For a tour of the heliport facility or to arrange a presentation on the Section, please contact Air Operations supervision at the numbers listed below. After business hours, if you would like to speak to the on-duty aircrew, please call the main heliport line at (626) 744-4625.
The information contained on this webpage can be saved or printed on this handy trifold brochure.Michael Ingram, Lieutenantmingram@cityofpasadena.net(626) 744-4606Chris Sharma, Sergeantcsharma@cityofpasadena.net(626) 744-6425
Bill Grisafe, Sergeantwgrisafe@cityofpasadena.net(626) 744-6425Patrick Polimeni, Chief Pilotppolimeni@cityofpasadena.net(626) 744-4648
Randall James, Director of Maintenancerjames@cityofpasadena.net(626) 744-4679
Section was created in 1969 under a federal grant and located at Brackett Field in Pomona.
The Benedict Heliport at 2175 Yucca Lane has been the home of Air Operations since it was built in the early 1970's.
Credited with reducing crime rate and being a major crime fighting deterrent.
One of first airborne units in the country to use helicopter for patrol purposes.
Excellent safety and training program.
Created a national model of a regional air support program (Foothill Air Support Team) in 2000.
Member of the Los Angeles Interagency Metropolitan Police Apprehension Crime Task Force (LA IMPACT) since the mid 1980's.
Air Support is a force multiplier for officers on the ground and in many cases can quickly and efficiently handle calls for service freeing officers to handle other duties. Statistics have shown that one helicopter can take the place of ten to twelve officers on the ground.
Air Support officers respond to all critical and high risk incidents which maximizes safety for both officers and citizens.
Air Operations personnel respond to approximately 6,000 calls per year.
The average response time to a call for the helicopter is 72 seconds. The air crews were the first officers on scene approximately 35% of the time.
Approximately 4,000 calls are handled each year by the air crew allowing ground officers to respond to other calls for service.
The Air Operations Section participates in approximately 200 arrests each year.
Be aware of unusual activity and report it promptly.
Be specific with your descriptions and observations. Items that are unique stand out to the aircrews and greatly enhance our ability of locate the target.
When you hear the helicopter circling over your neighborhood, turn on your outside lights if possible but do not go outside to search.
Increasing trend in aviation community
Can lead to serious injury or death
Loss of control of the aircraft
Serious offense that is punishable as a misdemeanor, felony, or even a federal crime. California Penal Code Section 247.5 and 248.
Many of the recent offenders have been teenagers and/or under the influence of narcotics or alcohol.
Crews constantly evaluate the quality of life issue associated with the helicopter noise against the risks and safety issues with the calls for service or activity on the ground.
Crews routinely fly higher at night and avoid residential areas in the evening hours unless there are calls for service or public safety concerns that require their assistance.
Air Operations personnel welcome phone calls or emails to discuss noise issues and concerns with our residents and guests.
The airspace above Pasadena is classified as Un-Controlled and used by other public safety agencies, commercial operators, news media, and the general aviation community.
Air Operations is committed to Flying Neighborly and obtained numerous Homeland Security grand awards to purchase more advanced camera systems, high intensity searchlights, and state of the art tail rotor technology which allows the crews to fly higher and still fulfill their public safety mission.
Air Operations personnel are constantly evaluating new equipment and tactics to reduce noise signature.
Remain a leader in the airborne law enforcement community by embracing the values of Excellence, Innovation, and Integrity.
Fiscal responsibility and the replacement of an aging fleet with quiet technology aircraft.
Regional partnerships and resource sharing.
Address homeland security issues and preparedness.
Improve public safety and build trust with community.