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Wichita Police Receive Federal Grant To Boost Community Policing Efforts

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Ark Valley Fire Buff
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flickr Creative Commons

The Wichita Police Department has received a federal grant from the Department of Justice to hire more community policing officers.

The community policing grant worth $875,000 will go toward hiring six new WPD officers and one supervisor.

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Credit WPD Facebook
Chief Gordon Ramsay speaks during the police briefing Tuesday.

Chief Gordon Ramsay says the officers will focus on problem locations along the Broadway corridor, particularly around motels and commercial areas there.

“The issues we’re seeing there are issues with human trafficking, illegal drug use, drug sales, disturbances, assaults, along with the issues with homelessness and mental health," he said during a police briefing Tuesday. "So this isn't a zero-tolerance program. Instead it focuses a lot on getting to the root of the issue."

The area had been a police focus in the 90s and saw "substantial gains," but the efforts were unsustained.

"We're gonna take another bite at this apple," Ramsay said.

Police will patrol the area on bikes and by foot.

“They will not be in a car very often," he said. "They will be a very visible presence in that neighborhood.”

The grant begins Jan. 1. Ramsay said the new hires will be in place by next spring.

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Follow Nadya Faulx on Twitter @NadyaFaulx.

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