The Wayne State Police Department's Bicycle Patrol Unit was founded during the winter of 1992. It was originally viewed as a low-cost and environmentally safe alternative to the department's motorized (scout car and motorcycle) patrol. A committee of the original four officers and Lt. Tom Williams met over a period of three months to develop equipment, uniforms, training and operating procedures. The unit first appeared on May 16, 1992, at the City of Detroit Special Olympics competition, held at WSU's Warrior Stadium. Currently there are six officers trained to operate the department's mountain bikes.
Bicycle patrol officers are currently assigned to different shifts and to the Community Oriented Policing (COP) section. Shift bicycle officers normally operate from early April to late October and patrol campus all the hours of the day. This affords the department not only a higher degree of visibility during daylight hours, but a higher degree of stealth and mobility throughout the early morning (midnight to sunrise). COP officers afford the same degree of visibility during special university and City of Detroit events such as the Festival of the Arts and Special Olympics.
Since its development, several metropolitan law enforcement agencies (both public and private) have requested assistance in developing their own bicycle patrol units. Wayne State's Bicycle Patrol Unit has served as a model for such agencies as the cities of Detroit, Roseville, Grosse Pointe Park and Farmington, and security for Henry Ford Hospital and Fox Theatre district.