By JAMES MITCHELL
Sunday Times Newspapers
LINCOLN PARK – In spite of the city’s ongoing struggle to provide services and eliminate its debts, Emergency Manager Brad Coulter said additions made last week to the city’s police department reflected a determination to maintain and improve public safety.
“Controlling crime is absolutely the No. 1 priority,” Coulter said. “It’s definitely a sign of commitment to police and protecting the city.”
Four new officers were sworn in Feb. 9, Michael Brown and Phillip Smith as full-time additions and Eric Harris and Eric Brogley as part-time patrol officers whose positions may expand to full-time, Coulter said.
“That’s the goal, to supplement the current roster,” Coulter said. “We don’t want to do down any further.”
The full-time hires replace two officers who’d left the department last year, and the part-time officers initially will be used to fill in for absent full-time staff. Police Chief Brian Hawk has been on extended medical leave, officers had been working overtime to fill in vacancies and maintain minimum staffing and road patrols.
(James Mitchell can be reached at [email protected].)