Columbia Police Ask City for 42 More Hires

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COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department told KOMU 8 News Monday, Chief Ken Burton is asking the city for money to hire 42 officers. The CPD originally discussed the need for 68 new positions, but then cut it down to 42.

The department would be hiring seven new detectives, giving Columbia a total of 19 detectives, three narcotics officers, 12 patrol officers, two sergeants, and various other positions.

Public Information Officer, Jill Wieneke said the department knows that realistically they will not get 42 new positions. If the city were to approve all the new hires, theoretically the cost would be in the millions. But 42 positions, is what the CPD says it needs to function at it's best.

"Chief Burton would not ask for this many if there wasn't a need," said Wieneke.

Wieneke said the department is also down seven to ten officers. Some are serving military duty, and some have moved away, but those positions remain vacant.

The City Council will look at the department's request while drafting it's budget for next year.