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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Solving Police Shortage: Fed Govt Could Pay for Cops to go to College

From baltimoresun.com: A growing problem for our nation's law enforcement community is the "cop crunch" that is leaving police departments across the country understaffed. The solution to this growing crisis is for Congress to reconstitute the Law Enforcement Education Program to attract qualified men and women to the field argues Karl Bickel, a former chief of law enforcement operations for the Frederick County Sheriff's Office and adjunct faculty member at Montgomery College in Rockville.

According to Bickel, from coast to coast, it is estimated that 80 percent of the nation's 17,000 state and local law enforcement agencies have vacancies they cannot fill. The Los Angeles Police Department has more than 700 vacancies, and in March, New York City announced plans to hire 800 more officers.

Bickel believes the solution is in a program that came out of the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration, established by the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968. It is the Law Enforcement Education Program, or LEEP. LEEP was among the biggest successes to come out of the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration. In the 1970s, it helped pay to educate more than 300,000 law enforcement officers who attended more than 1,000 colleges and universities nationwide.  Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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