The Salisbury Police Department (SPD) will shift patrol coverage effective, Monday, March 30, to respond more efficiently and effectively to call volume and law enforcement needs.
“Our current staffing model has the same number of officers working every hour of the day and our call volume doesn’t match that model,” said Salisbury Police Chief Jerry Stokes. “This deployment puts more officers on the street during peak call times without having to hire more officers. It is using our resources better and more efficiently.”
According to the SPD, this change is important because it represents its continued commitment to the Stratified Policing Model, which requires the department to analyze crime trends, solve policing and community problems, and hold themselves accountable to the Salisbury community. Salisbury residents should expect to see a shorter response time when they call 911 due to more officers available at the times when they are more likely to need help. The department is 95% fully staffed.
“Lt. Justin Crews and Lt. Joe Miller lead this initiative by first conferring with our crime analyst to determine what times, and days of the week, represented our busiest hours and days,” said Deputy Police Chief Shon Barnes. “They then explored different models to provide the most officers during those times, while maintaining our permanent shift schedule. We will continue to have officers assigned to neighborhoods. At the Salisbury Police Department, our motto is ‘Every Officer has a Neighborhood, and Every Neighborhood has an Officer.’ This will not change.”
SPD administration had planned to roll out the coverage shift in late April, but given the current situation with COVID-19, the plan has been moved up by one month.
“We went ahead with it because it reduces the number of times officers are in one place at one time, therefore reducing the chance of spreading the virus,” added Chief Stokes.