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Increased police foot patrols coming to San Jose

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Flickr / Creative Commons

The City Council unanimously approved a proposal from Mayor Sam Liccardo last month to fund 16 police to patrol San Jose streets. The program, which costs nearly four million dollars, is part of the mayor's efforts to rebuild the police department.

The San Jose Spotlight reports the program will add four permanent foot patrol officers to each police division in the city--with the focus on the downtown core, dense residential neighborhoods and business corridors. SJPD has four divisions, including central/downtown, Foothill, Southern and Western.

The San Jose Police Department is the most thinly-staffed law enforcement department of any major U.S. metropolis, city officials said. The chronic staffing shortages in the department have intensified over the past decade from budget cuts. Increases in population and calls for service have also resulted in rising demand for police.

Police officials and residents hope the program will help law enforcement build relationships with the communities they serve, further advancing community-based policing.

San Jose expects the new officers to start patrolling in a year, as hiring and training will take at least 12 months. The city will rely on current officers to pilot the program this year.