SALT LAKE CTY — The Salt Lake City Police Department will undergo some organizational changes and take other steps to address an increase in crime, the department announced Wednesday.
The changes are being implemented due to an uptick in property and violent crimes in Utah's capital city.
Next month, SLCPD will reassign 20 officers who've been working in other specialized areas to supplement the department's patrol force. By adding more officers to patrol duty, the department hopes to improve response time for service calls and provide more proactive, visible community-based policing throughout the city.
Eighteen recent field training graduates will also join SLCPD's expanded patrol force.
“Patrol is the backbone of the police department. When someone has to call 911, they expect the police to get there and get there quickly. Responding to calls for service is the primary function of a police department and will continue to be our focus,” said Chief Mike Brown in a news release.
Beginning in October, SLCPD has been allowing its field supervisors to redirect "non-call responsive units" to handle service calls as needed.
"These changes, which were implemented in October, have already led to a reduction in both the number of calls that have not been dispatched, as well as the time it takes for an officer to arrive at the call," the news release states.
SLCPD has been engaged in conversations with other law enforcement agencies at the federal, state and local levels to leverage collective resources to bring chronic offenders to justice.
Further details about SLCPD's organizational changes and partnerships are expected in the coming weeks.