Spokane Police Department needs additional officers to keep up w - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Spokane Police Department needs additional officers to keep up with crime rate

Posted: Updated:
SPOKANE, Wash. -

Spokane’s finest, despite their best efforts, aren’t always able to cover all the bases.

As the incident with the ax-wielding vandal on July 12th showed, Spokane Police often have their hands full.

SPD’s Public Information Officer, John O’Brien, said while it isn’t uncommon for there to be times of the day when there are no units available to respond to a particular call right when it’s reported, the 12th was unusual because police had their hands tied with a lengthy standoff when a man court documents identify as 28-year-old Torin Ford began swinging an ax-shaped piece of steel through several downtown windows.

While the incident is rather bizarre, it highlights a problem local police have been facing, with increases in property and other crime stretching their resources.

“Our numbers are spreading us a little thin with the number of crimes in Spokane,” said O’Brien. “It would sure be good to put some more bodies out there.”

O’Brien says part of the issue is that, on top of having less funding than they would like, the department has seen a lack of applicants to join the police force. They have been intensifying their recruiting efforts, and O’Brien says that anyone who is interested in joining law enforcement should begin the process to see if it’s a good fit for them.

And it wouldn’t take massive numbers to help move the needle. O’Brien says that even one or two extra officers per team would make a huge difference. He mentioned a grant-based increase in police presence in the north side over a short period of time, which led to a 25% decrease in the crime rate for that area.

O’Brien said that the other step citizens can take to help reduce crimes is to report the criminal conduct they see.

“Unfortunately, there’s probably more crime going on than we’re aware of, because people aren’t reporting it. Please report the crimes so that we can figure out where the hotspots are, [and] where we need to move more people to,” he said. “It’s not an inconvenience, we want to know where the crimes are, so that we can partner with the community to stop it.”

And while police will always prioritize responding to crimes against persons over property crimes, O’Brien urges that those who see property crime report it, though being conscious of their own safety in doing so.

“A property crime can turn into a crime against a person very quickly. I would encourage people, when they see these things, make sure they keep themselves safe. Get distance away from it, be a great witness, call it in,” he said.

If you have an interest in joining the police force, you can visit the Spokane City Civil Service Commission website to view the requirements and begin the application process.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Washington's new DUI-E law takes effect Sunday

    Washington's new DUI-E law takes effect Sunday

    Tuesday, July 18 2017 10:02 PM EDT2017-07-19 02:02:25 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He was my youngest, he was my baby bear," Tina Myer said about her son that was killed by a distracted driver. It was a distracted driver that killed Tina Myer's son Cody, hitting the 23-year-old as he was working as a flagger at a construction site in December 2015. He suffered severe injuries, and died several months later. Now Myer is joining Governor Inslee, praising a new DUI-E law.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - "He was my youngest, he was my baby bear," Tina Myer said about her son that was killed by a distracted driver. It was a distracted driver that killed Tina Myer's son Cody, hitting the 23-year-old as he was working as a flagger at a construction site in December 2015. He suffered severe injuries, and died several months later. Now Myer is joining Governor Inslee, praising a new DUI-E law.

    >>
  • Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington dies at 41, Los Angeles County coroner says

    Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington dies at 41, Los Angeles County coroner says

    Thursday, July 20 2017 2:48 PM EDT2017-07-20 18:48:32 GMT

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington has died, according to the Los Angeles County coroner. Law enforcement officials believe Bennington died by suicide. His body was found hanging inside his residence in Los Angeles shortly before 9:00 a.m. on Thursday.

    >>

    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington has died, according to the Los Angeles County coroner. Law enforcement officials believe Bennington died by suicide. His body was found hanging inside his residence in Los Angeles shortly before 9:00 a.m. on Thursday.

    >>
  • Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    Wednesday, July 19 2017 8:24 PM EDT2017-07-20 00:24:22 GMT
    Court docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICUCourt docs: 3 month old baby with severe brain trauma taken to ICU

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police Officers were called to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital Friday after receiving word that a three month old baby had arrived at the Intensive Care Unit with severe brain trauma. Court documents say the parents took the baby to the Holy Family Hospital, where the injuries were deemed severe. The baby was then taken by ambulance to Sacred Heart. According to the documents, a CPS caseworker says one 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police Officers were called to Sacred Heart Children's Hospital Friday after receiving word that a three month old baby had arrived at the Intensive Care Unit with severe brain trauma. Court documents say the parents took the baby to the Holy Family Hospital, where the injuries were deemed severe. The baby was then taken by ambulance to Sacred Heart. According to the documents, a CPS caseworker says one 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Deputies search for missing man in Bonner County

    Deputies search for missing man in Bonner County

    Thursday, July 20 2017 6:39 PM EDT2017-07-20 22:39:12 GMT

    BONNER COUNTY, Idaho  - The Bonner County Sheriff's Office is requesting the public's assistance in locating 37-year-old David A. Xanatos. He was last seen in the Clark Fork area and is believed to be driving a 1988 blue Chevy truck with Idaho license plate number 7BL6090. He is 6'3 and 244 lbs. Anyone who has seen Xanatos or has any information regarding his whereabouts is asked to call (208) 265-5525. 

    >>

    BONNER COUNTY, Idaho  - The Bonner County Sheriff's Office is requesting the public's assistance in locating 37-year-old David A. Xanatos. He was last seen in the Clark Fork area and is believed to be driving a 1988 blue Chevy truck with Idaho license plate number 7BL6090. He is 6'3 and 244 lbs. Anyone who has seen Xanatos or has any information regarding his whereabouts is asked to call (208) 265-5525. 

    >>
  • Suspect in Latah County homicide is adoptive son of Pullman Police Dept. Commander

    Suspect in Latah County homicide is adoptive son of Pullman Police Dept. Commander

    Thursday, July 20 2017 6:17 PM EDT2017-07-20 22:17:20 GMT

    MOSCOW, Idaho - The Latah County Sheriff's Office is currently looking for two men in connection to a homicide that happened earlier this week.  Details are limited on the investigation Latah County Sheriff Richie Skiles said the homicide allegedly took place in a wood area and not at a residence. Skiles said the body of an adult male was found by law enforcement Wednesday and determined to have died from a gunshot wound.

    >>

    MOSCOW, Idaho - The Latah County Sheriff's Office is currently looking for two men in connection to a homicide that happened earlier this week.  Details are limited on the investigation Latah County Sheriff Richie Skiles said the homicide allegedly took place in a wood area and not at a residence. Skiles said the body of an adult male was found by law enforcement Wednesday and determined to have died from a gunshot wound.

    >>
  • Alexa, turn up my Kenmore AC; Sears cuts a deal with Amazon

    Alexa, turn up my Kenmore AC; Sears cuts a deal with Amazon

    Thursday, July 20 2017 6:16 PM EDT2017-07-20 22:16:28 GMT
    (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. (AP) - Sears will begin selling its appliances on Amazon.com, including smart appliances that can be synced with Amazon's voice assistant, Alexa. The announcement Thursday sent shares of Sears soaring almost 11 percent. The tie-up with the internet behemoth could give shares of the storied retailer one of its biggest one-day percentage gains ever. Sears, which also owns Kmart, said that its Kenmore Smart appliances will be fully integrated with Amazon's Alexa,

    >>

    HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. (AP) - Sears will begin selling its appliances on Amazon.com, including smart appliances that can be synced with Amazon's voice assistant, Alexa. The announcement Thursday sent shares of Sears soaring almost 11 percent. The tie-up with the internet behemoth could give shares of the storied retailer one of its biggest one-day percentage gains ever. Sears, which also owns Kmart, said that its Kenmore Smart appliances will be fully integrated with Amazon's Alexa,

    >>