BRPD battling increase in officer retirement
BATON ROUGE- A new class of officers graduated on Monday while the Baton Rouge police department battle a potential personnel shortage.
The Baton Rouge Police department 80th Basic Training Academy held a commencement ceremony for 34 new police trainees at the Independence Park Theatre.
"I like to stand up to those who can't stand up to themselves ,and defend those who cant defend themselves," said Robin Ducote, new officer from Lake Charles. "That's just always been me since I was little."
Ducote is just one of the 34 officers who will fill in positions of officers who are retiring, moving up in the ranks or left the force for other reasons. Chief Carl Dabadie says the number of officers reaching retirement age is increasing. He says they usually have about 10 to 12 retirees each year but more than twenty are expected to retire by 2015. However, Dabadie says there is a plan to replace those officers quickly for next year.
"We're budgeted for two more classes two 30 man academies so by the end of 2015 we'll have 60 more officers," said Dabadie. "You know the police department yearly goes through a tradition through retirements and resignation, so by having this academy its replenishes our ranks and man power on the street."
Metro council will meet Tuesday to discuss the budget it'll be up to them to set aside money to pay for the academies.
"By adding 60 new officers, that really should put a lot more people on the ground. said Councilman John Delagdo. "That's going to mean lower crime across our community."
Officials say they will also incorporate a post academy for people who already have law enforcement experience and want to be a part of the Baton Rouge Police Department.