72 more police for city's worst areas BALTIMORE CITY

February 10, 1993|By Michael James | Michael James,Staff Writer

Baltimore will be hiring 72 additional police officers to be assigned to the city's most-violent crime areas as part of a $2.25 million grant from the state, police officials said.

The new personnel will be assigned to 23 of the city's highest-crime areas in the Eastern, Western and Central districts, said Sam Ringgold, a Baltimore police spokesman.

Violent Crime Control Grants were awarded to the city and Prince George's County police departments. Each department receives $2.25 million "to allow efforts . . . to control crime and citizen fear of crime," a statement from the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services said.

Nine current officers will be promoted to sergeant, a move also made possible by the grant.

The 72 new officers are slated to enter the city police academy in either March or May, Mr. Ringgold said.

"It's a priority for us to get more officers on the street," Mr. Ringgold said. "Maybe this is the first move in the direction to get us to our authorized strength."

The department currently employs 2,859 sworn officers although, according to budget appropriations, the authorized number of officers should be 3,039. Budget cutbacks and attrition account for the 180 vacancies.

With the appropriations for 72 more officers, the department's authorized strength will be 3,111 officers, with 2,931 actually employed, Mr. Ringgold said.

Prince George's will be using the money to hire 30 community policing officers and to assign 50 specially-trained uniformed officers to high-crime areas in the county's six police districts. The money for the grants was approved in the 1992 General Assembly.

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