INDIANAPOLIS – Faced with a dwindling police force–both in terms of manpower and money–Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Chief Rick Hite is set to announce reassignments that will, in theory, add up to 100 more officers to take complaints and respond to calls for help.
IMPD’s authorized strength has dipped well below 1,600, several hundred officers below the level some experts say is needed to patrol a city the size of Indianapolis.
And up to 40 officers a year are expected to retire.
Hite and Public Safety Director Troy Riggs undertook an analysis of IMPD’s manpower allocation and are set to announce plans to put officers in a position to take runs on the streets.
“What people see on Monday is a plan that takes us out a few years, but also is a plan that will continue to be worked upon in the next few months,” said Riggs. “Not only are we talking about putting people back in the run queue, we’re talking about becoming more efficient. We’re talking about identifying positions that civilians could potentially do that now we have officers in and we haven’t hired civilians in five years.”
Riggs indicated to Fox 59 News that he’s cautiously optimistic he’s discovered enough savings to hire a handful of civilians in the coming year to replace uniformed officers. Riggs is also considering the possibility of hiring and training an IMPD recruit class in 2014.
“I think you’re going to see on Monday (that) we are working on a plan that gives us sustainable numbers for the next two to three years, which is extremely important for our workforce,” he said.
Hite is also expected to announce results from a citywide springtime crackdown that’s netted dozens of guns and felons through targeted patrols and operations.
“I think the goal of Chief Hite and his staff is to be as proactive as possible,” said Riggs. “And by putting more people on the street, we’re going to be able to be more proactive than we are now.”