Archive for Thursday, February 16, 2006

Basehor business owner calls for increased police patrols

February 16, 2006

A Basehor business owner who was the victim of burglars a month ago recently called on city officials to implement changes that would bolster police protection.

Dennis Mertz of J.E.D. Installation, told city council members during their meeting last week that in January thieves stole $5,500 worth of tools and caused $500 in damage to a company trailer on Parallel Road. Mertz said he's displeased with the police department's response to the case. He asked council members to ensure that two police officers are on duty 24 hours a day.

"People know if you just passed a cop, you're not going to see another one," he said, adding, "I'm saying there is a problem. I'm asking you all to figure out how to fix the problem."

The business owner also submitted a letter to council members that was more direct.

"Let the criminals know that we will not let them steal from our town," he wrote. "The bad publicity is hurting our community, and I am not particularly happy with the police department's lack of manpower."

Police Chief Terry Horner said he would not disclose the schedule his officers keep in protecting the city.

Basehor Mayor Chris Garcia said coverage problems may be alleviated once the police department roster is restored.

The city's 2006 budget provides funds for nine full-time officers.

However, the roster has been limited to five full-time officers. Two full-time officers are on leave and a third is training at the police academy.

The police chief is reviewing applications to fill the ninth position.

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