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Bismarck Police Department looks to hire new officers, increase patrols

Published: Nov. 23, 2021 at 5:47 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The Bismarck Police Department is expanding. They hope to make the Capital City, and schools in the area, safer by bringing in four additional officers on board.

When officers hop in their patrol cars, their shift is often non-stop.

“Officers are very busy on the street, generally running from call to call to call and we are hoping with a little extra help out there we can do more proactive enforcement,” said Bismarck Police Chief Dave Draovitch.

The 2020 crime report revealed that personal crimes in Bismarck were up 22 percent and property crimes increased 3 percent. Officers responded to 5,557 calls for service.

According to a 2020 research study by University of Pennsylvania criminologist Aaron Chalfin, additional officers correlated with a reduction in homicides per year. Bismarck police say additional patrols will improve their response times.

“Proactive prevention, just getting into neighborhoods more often. People like to see that, and we like to do that for them,” said Draovitch.

The decision to add additional officers came following the Sept. 14 approval of the city budget.

“Property tax, basically that covers public safety. That includes police, fire, CenCom, we subsidize roads and streets,” said Bismarck city commissioner Steve Marquardt.

The plan is to add two patrol officers and two school resource officers with Bismarck Public Schools.

“All the secondary schools will have their own SRO now. It will be very helpful for the schools and our department,” said Draovitch.

Bismarck police serve more than 73,000 citizens.

The department has approximately 129 officers. The additional two school resource officers would mean each BPD SRO would interact with about 1,000 students.

To learn more about applying to be a police officer visit www.bismarcknd.gov/jobs.

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