While every police department operates within their own city limits, on occasion officers have to leave their city to do their job. Technically, they can’t do that unless all the cities involved agree. Pinellas cities renew those agreements, called mutual aid agreements, with each new term of the Pinellas County Sheriff. At the January 5 Gulfport City Council meeting, council unanimously agreed to renew its mutual aid agreement with Pinellas police departments.
This allows other Pinellas police departments to respond to Gulfport-related calls if needed. It also allows Gulfport to investigate and make arrests for Gulfport-related crimes in other cities and the unincorporated areas. This doesn’t mean that Gulfport officers will conduct routine patrols in other cities, or that other cities’ police officers will do so in Gulfport.
If they happen to see a crime taking place, say, on their way to work, Gulfport Police Chief Rob Vincent told council, the officer can take action – provided they’re driving a police car. On other words, if a Gulfport police officer sees someone blow a red light in Clearwater, they can’t do anything about it if they’re driving their husband’s Kia.