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police & fire

17 Hires Give Bridgeport PD 100 New Officers In Last Two-Plus Years

Mayor Joe Ganim and Chief AJ Perez address the new police recruits.
Mayor Joe Ganim and Chief AJ Perez address the new police recruits. Photo Credit: Bridgeport Police Department

Mayor Joseph Ganim and Bridgeport Police Chief AJ Perez welcomed the 17 newest police recruits training at the Bridgeport Police Academy this week.

The 17 new recruits bring the total number of new officers to 100 since Ganim took office in 2015.

In addition to the recruits, the most recent BPD graduating class of 22 officers hit the streets this week, the department said.

“The Police Department serves a major function in any city and the only way they can properly do their job is with the manpower," said Ganim. "It has been my commitment to replenish the Police Department so that we can continue to improve public safety in Bridgeport for our residents and for our schools. This new class brings us to our goal.”

The increase in the police department staff will allow the chief to adequately assign officers to fill cars on patrol, and more effectively provide community policing details in city neighborhoods.

The chief has also issued a request for nine additional School Resource Officers (SRO) to improve school safety.

Bridgeport Police Chief AJ Perez said, “I am thankful to have a Mayor that understands the importance of fully equipped force. We not only have a competent and capable team but a team devoted to Bridgeport that understands the needs of our community. These recruits could have applied anywhere but they chose our city because they want to make a difference.”

The recruits will also be required to participate in various community interactive days in order to begin to forge relationships with the public. This would include spending an afternoon in Bridgeport Public Schools to interact with students.

Once complete, the officers-in-training will get three months of hands-on experience in the field.

The diverse new class, which includes six Hispanics, four African Americans, and four women, are slated to graduate at the end of September.

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