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Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015 12:18 am

Editor's note 12/10/15

In this day and age, who in their right mind would want to start up and run a police department? The Springfield Park District, by all appearances. The district already has a department, but in name only, given that it has just three officers who can’t keep track of evidence or policies and procedures, let alone patrol parks on any kind of consistent basis. Still, the parks are safe. Why, then, resurrect the department by doubling the number of officers, as a consultant has recommended? (See “Park police riddled with problems,” p. 8) Park board members say they want to have their own department, but can’t seem to articulate just why that’s a good idea. Between Springfield and Sangamon County and Sherman and Rochester and Jerome and Grandview and Southern View and Chatham and Lincoln Land Community College and University of Illinois Springfield and the state, all of which have police departments, we already have plenty of cops. We should use them wisely. If we really need cops assigned to parks, then the district should hire off-duty officers and put the district’s police department in its rearview mirror, where it belongs. –Fletcher Farrar, editor and publisher

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