Shift changes put more MPD officers on the street, decreases overtime

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A pilot program kicked off Saturday inside the Memphis Police Department that has officers working longer shifts.

It changes up a couple of the current shifts at two Memphis precincts in order to help put more officers on the street, according to Deputy Chief Frank Garrett.

"You get more officers on the street, hopefully can solve some of our crime problems as well as our safety for some of our officers," Garrett said.

The plan is for a 10 hour shift from 2 p.m. to midnight that will replace two other shifts.

"The two shifts originally started from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. and the Delta shift that starts at 5 p.m. and runs over to 1 a.m.," Garrett said.

He said because of the number of officers retiring or moving to other departments, they were having a serious problem with manpower. Before this shift change, the solution was overtime.

"Officers work anywhere from 12-16 hours a day at work," Garrett said.

So, after talking with multiple departments, they're hoping this new shift is the answer. He said the program is being put to work at two precincts, Old Allen Road and Raines, and affects approximately 120 officers.

"They receive the most calls. They receive the most calls, they have the most issues going as far as crime in the city, and they're the busiest," Garrett said.

He said it will be put to the test for 90 days and, depending on the results, they could implement the program to all precincts in the city.

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