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Thursday, February 17, 2005

Gazette: Police officer recruitment falling short of target

"Police officer recruitment falling short of target"
by Sonsyrea Tate
Staff Writer
Feb. 17, 2005
The Prince George's County police department is having a hard time recruiting enough qualified officers, despite a pledge from County Executive Jack B. Johnson and the County Council to dramatically increase the size of the force over the next six years.
. . .

Some applicants have not made it pass tests for prior drug use. "We're having a hard time meeting the standards with people here."

Johnson last year vowed to hire 150 police officers in each of the remaining two years of his term and an additional 150 annually in the four years after that if he is re-elected.

The County Council approved funds for the additional hires, but the department has had difficulty reaching the goal.

The police department has an authorized strength of 1,420 officers, but has had a difficult time rising above a compliment of 1,300.
. . .

"We have more crime than Baltimore County and respond to more calls. They have 1,800," Alston told the Gazette this week. "An FBI analysis showed that we really need 2,200."
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