New Camden police force takes to streets

April 8, 2013 2:56:50 PM PDT
More than 30 members of the new Camden County Police Department Metro Division will be deployed on the streets of New Jersey's most impoverished city.

In addition, 23 new officers will begin field training with former members of the Camden police department. Those officers will share their experience of patrolling the streets.

The new Camden County police force is planned to take over patrols from the city force on April 30.

The county force has offered jobs to 140 current officers and 120 outside officers.

The new operation is to have 400 workers including police and civilians.

"The days of anything goes in Camden is coming to an end," Mayor Dana Redd told reporters Monday afternoon.

"By the fall of this year, we will have 401 police officers," said Camden County Freeholder Louis Capelli, Jr. "Currently in Camden City, before this whole process began, we had 209 offiers. So nearly doubling the number of officers."

Mayor Redd also announced an initiative to improve the quality of life in Camden by cleaning up the streets.

Officials are paying for the bolstered police force because the city is not obligated to follow existing city union police contracts with the new officers. Also, there is state grant money being used. It's unclear how long the grant money will last.