Lincoln to add 5 new police officers, funds for mental health services

Lincoln has received grant funds that will allow for the hiring of five new police officers, city officials said Thursday. 
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Lincoln has received grant funds that will allow for the hiring of five new police officers, city officials said Thursday.

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird said the federal government approved $625,000 in funds which will be supplemented by $150,000 in city funding.

The officers will be hired and begin their training in January.

The officers will be tasked with reviewing handgun purchases, conducting threat assessments and working with community organizations in an overall effort to reduce gun violence and mass shootings.

Police Chief Jeff Bliemeister said the officers will be doing comprehensive follow-up work and investigations that currently requires the attention of other officers assigned to Lincoln’s various geographic districts. This includes preventing illegal firearms sales, keeping firearms out of the hands of people who are not legally allowed to have them and using ballistics technology to solve crimes.

Both Gaylor Baird and Police Chief Jeff Bliemeister say the grant will lead to a reduction in crime and help to improve police-community relations.

The mayor also announced an additional $150,000 in funding for crisis response, social services and mental health services.

The City Council’s public hearing on the budget is Monday, August 3, and could be adopted by August 24.

 

 

 

 

 

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