Officer Baldwin visits Criminal Justice Class


Photo by Henry Ryan

Throughout the first semester, Officer Baldwin, the school resource officer, visited the criminal justice class multiple times. He helps guide students to further educate them on the inner workings of America’s justice system, as well as explaining his own stories about criminal justice. 

The class is an elective taught by Mr. Scott. He teaches how justice is served in the United States. Criminal justice class goes in depth about your rights, how officers detain people, how the prison system works, how due process works, and other vital aspects of the justice system. 

Will Rossi has been taking the class since August 2022.

“We learn about the legal system. Recently we learned about judges’ non-trial and trial jobs that they have to do. We learned about the power prosecutors have,” said Rossi.

During Officer Baldwin’s visits, he discusses his job responsibilities and how fortunate he is to be in Chagrin Falls. 

“I learned what it’s like to be a police officer in Chagrin Falls, and how different it is from being a police officer in a different area, what his job at the school entails, and how it’s a preferable job for a lot of police officers in the force,” said Rossi.

Senior Tyler Cooke has been taking the class since August 2022. 

“It’s about the police force and the court system. It gives us an overview of what the police officers go through every day, you get to walk through their schedules, but also you get to learn about the court side of it too. It’s a whole overview of the criminal justice system in America,” said Cooke.

During Officer Bawldwin’s latest visit on November 17th, he helped the students design their own police departments. 

“We got to build our own police stations,” said Cooke.

During the process, they started building these fictional police departments from scratch.

“It was pretty cool because we built it from scratch, we all had to come up with the laws and the schedules for the officers,” said Cooke.

Senior Max Fossaceca has also been taking the class since August 2022. 

“He’s normally there to speak from his experiences when we are talking about different things,” said Fossaceca.

A Q&A session was held the first time Officer Baldwin visited the class.

“The first time he came in it was a Q&A, we could ask him any type of questions we had if we were interested,” said Fossaceca.

Each visit from Officer Baldwin is different. He can be helping the class or discussing his own experiences. 

“It’s really helpful to actually hear a lot of the stuff we’re learning from an actual police officer,” said Rossi.

“It’s a different perspective on the unit as a whole, and it’s always intriguing to hear his side of this because he goes through it every day, and it’s eye-opening when you hear some of the stuff they go through and procedures they have to deal with. So I’d say it’s nice to get a different perspective,” said Cooke.

Due to Officer Baldwin helping the criminal justice class and keeping kids safe in school, he has an excellent relationship with the community. 

“Every time I see him in the hallway he always has a smile on his face and says hello. He definitely has a great relationship with everybody at the school and the community as a whole,” said Cooke.

Officer Baldwin continues to have a great relationship with the students and continues to protect and serve the community of Chagrin Falls.