MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – What is happening with Memphis Police is incredibly unusual.
In years past, there have normally been one recruitment class, maybe two at tops. Now they’re about to have their third class of the year, and if you want to apply, get busy.
The reason this is going on is because Mayor Jim Strickland and the head of the Shelby County Crime Commission say more officers are needed. There’s only one way to get them.
The lead recruiting officer for Memphis Police is Officer Kevin Moore, who says “What we’re trying to do is find the individuals who have that passion and the desire to do it.”
For the nearly four years of the Strickland Administration, the number of police on the streets has been a slow – underline that word – a slow increase.
At one point there were more than 1900 officers, currently there are 2,066.
Mayor Strickland says they are making progress.
“Rebuilding the police department,” he said, “… is one of the toughest things we’ve dealt with. That’s why we’ve increased pay for the police, improved benefits, and drastically increased the number of officers that have been promoted.”
Officers and firefighters left once the benefits and retirement packages were drastically reduced several years ago.
Even with the mayor hiring 450 officers, when compared to the number that left, it results in a gain on the streets of 24 to 57 officers, depending on who you talk to.
The deadline to sign up is Friday. The written and physical tests are Saturday. CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE.
“The two components around the physical test,” according to Officer Moore, “… is, one is a mile and a half run, 16 minutes and 30 seconds is the qualifying time. Very achievable, as well as an obstacle course, which simulates a foot chase.”
The recruitment class itself is scheduled to begin in September.