Charlotte Chief Seeks 125 Officers, Defends Crime Count


Charlotte-Mecklenburg, N.C., police chief Rodney Monroe wants to add 125 new officers next fiscal year, a $4.5 million cost even as the city prepares to cut back in the faltering economy, the Charlotte Observer reports. Monroe, who took over in June, offered the city council assurances that his method for reporting crime statistics is consistent with that of previous Chief Darrel Stephens. The Observer has raised questions about how crimes are counted under Monroe’s leadership. “”No directives or implications have been communicated to capture or report crime differently,” he said. “(Neither) I nor any member of this department are under or feel pressure to manipulate crime.”

In addition to the officers, Monroe asked for three crime analysts and 12 telecommunicators, as well as 125 electronic monitoring devices to track chronic offenders. He estimated the cost at $940,000. The police department already has overspent its budget by $2.2 million this fiscal year, which ends in June. Monroe pointed out that crime under his watch has dropped since he reorganized the department in September. That contrasts to the several months before he took over as chief when crime spiked and residents, demanding action, marched on city hall.

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