Donovan to Mayor Barrett: Quit deceiving the public – there are no extra patrols!
Statement from Alderman Bob Donovan
After a homicide yesterday on the street in broad daylight at N. 47th and W. Center St., a large fight broke out at the intersection, just as Police Chief Edward Flynn was preparing to hold a news conference about the killing. Minutes later, another shooting took place about a block away!
The residents of that neighborhood sure could have used some extra police patrols, in my opinion. As a matter of fact, during my twice weekly walks in my district, I hear residents who are clamoring for more police presence to combat the drug dealing, prostitution, loud parties and car thefts that are happening far too often (and I can only imagine what the good people in far more challenged Milwaukee neighborhoods are saying about the need for more patrols!).
But if you go back and read the headline in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on August 4, 2014 it states: “Police patrols to increase in August” (an earlier online version of the article had this headline: “Milwaukee police will increase patrols in August, Tom Barrett says”).
Well, here we are on August 19th and police sources are telling me that they have no knowledge of these so-called “extra patrols!”
These must be special, top secret “stealth” patrols the mayor was referring to!
Also, I noticed that that mayor is touting adding 15 officers to the (next recruit class?).
That is, sadly, only a drop in the bucket when you consider:
- There are currently 107 MPD officer vacancies.
- People should remember that the officer vacancy rate was “magically” addressed when 100 sworn positions were eliminated in the 2010 city budget.
- In the next two years, 267 sworn MPD personnel (14.1%) will be eligible to retire. I believe that most of those sworn employees will indeed decide to retire, given the low morale and frantic pace they must keep up because of our crime problems.
Yet the mayor points to adding 15 officers? He must be joking!
And I feel for the officers who are so understaffed that they must respond to calls for service sometimes hours late. They hear the constant stream of complaints from residents about the lag in response time, but it is NOT the fault of the officers.
It is the fault of Mayor Barrett and the majority of my colleagues who have failed to step up and provide the additional officers Milwaukee needs to address the out-of-control violence and disorder in the city.
Tom, in all the years you’ve been in politics you should have learned this valuable lesson: You may be able to fool some of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all of the time.
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