(RightIsRight.co) – The city of New Orleans, Louisiana, which was recently declared the “murder capital” of the US, will hire civilians as crime scene “detectives” amid a severe shortage of police officers and an uptick in homicides.
As per the new measures of the New Orleans Police Department, described as “desperate” by The New York Post, civilians are going to be “sent out to crime scenes to gather evidence.”
In addition to serving as detectives, civilians will also be used for administrative duties, which is supposed to free up actual police officers to be out on the city streets.
“As we take calls over the phone, there may be some evidence that needs to be collected with that call,” New Orleans Police Superintendent Shaun Ferguson told a press conference on Sunday.
“We’ll have civilian investigators to go out and collect that evidence instead of an officer having to go out there and collect that evidence,” he explained further.
In his words, 50 – 75 civilians will be hired to respond to “some minor calls” and get training on how to do “some detective work.”
Even more civilians will be recruited to perform administrative tasks and monitor phones.
“The goal of all of this is to make our officers feel safe so that they can make our citizens and visitors feel safe. This is also to reduce some of the workload currently placed on our patrol and district personnel. But more importantly this is designed to reduce response time and address the backlogs in which we have in some of our districts,” Ferguson elaborated.
Earlier this month, New Orleans surpassed St. Louis as the nation’s murder capital after registering a 78% spike in murders by September 11 this year and a 121% increase compared with 2019, the last pre-pandemic year.
Last year, the New Orleans Police Department lost 150 officers from its ranks, leaving it severely understaffed.
Besides seeking to recruit civilians to perform some police duties, the superintendent urged police applicants who were rejected in the past to apply again.
“This is all in an effort to be in… more of a competitive position to hire more employees with the New Orleans Police Department. So my message to those that may have been disqualified for any of these reasons in the past – I’m urging you to resubmit your application because some of our hiring criteria has changed,” Ferguson said.
“If you are looking for a job, we are hiring, we are definitely hiring,” he concluded.
New Orleans to use civilians as crime-scene 'detectives' as slayings spike https://t.co/PoZhdNcuKn pic.twitter.com/HQ96FDRbs6
— New York Post (@nypost) September 25, 2022