New KCPD chief wants to hire more community officers as outreach program returns

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In January, the Kansas City Police Department hopes to have more community interaction officers. 

The community officer program has been in the metro for decades but recently that program was eliminated from the department. 

New Police Chief Rick Smith is bringing the program back and he wants it to have more officers.

In the past, there’s been one officer assigned to every division, Chief Smith wants there to be two officers.

"This is a bridge named trust. Between the police department and the community. It is availability, accessibility, it is a person that can help dive into deep-rooted problems and issues in the communities," said officer Jason Cooley.

KCPD hope to have two community officers in every division by January.

Smith also wants to purchase ballistic helmets for all regular patrol officers to keep in their vehicles. He also mentioned hold times for 911 calls and says he hopes to hire more staff to correct the problem.

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