By ROBERT CONAHEY
I am writing in response to the recent article in the Keizertimes about a proposal to add five officers to the Keizer Police Department.
I exceptionally and greatly support this proposal; it is greatly needed and overdue. I only wish that there could be more officers added. I enjoy the system of parks that the city of Keizer has and they are very nice but I think that it is more important to have additional police protection.
The recent burglary covered in the March 24 issue of the Keizertimes illustrates this point. More police means more coverage and more coverage means less crime. Suspects are more likely to be caught and locked up.
By having more officers on the streets the word will go out through the criminal network that Keizer is not open for business. Criminals will not be welcome here and they should just move on and go somewhere else to commit their crimes.
I have been a victim of crime and reported it to the police. If there had been more officers and more resources available to the department and the officers then maybe the case could have been resolved instead of going cold and me having to pay out of my own pocket for a private investigator and lawyer with my limited resources.
It is important to have a safe community and for the residents and others to know that they are safe and well protected. New residents and businesses, especially those that provide good living wage jobs will not come to an area that is not safe and well protected. I think that we all aggree that Keizer is growing and will continue to grow and that employers who provide good jobs that pay a living wage with benefits are what we seek and they will not come to an area that it not safe and well protected.
I don’t mind paying more taxes to have good police and fire protection. If that is what it takes to make and maintain Keizer as a safe and vibrant community and the place we all want it to be.
Long-term I would like to see the Keizer Police Department be staffed so that there are two officers in the car at all times. In the short term during the hours of darkness there should be two police officers per car. It helps with officer safety and productivity
As for parks, the city of Keizer prides itself on volunteerism. What is wrong with having volunteers, churches, youth groups such as the various scout groups and those required to do community service perform these tasks.
(Robert Conahey lives in Keizer.)