INDIANAPOLIS -- A push by Indianapolis to increase the number of cops on the street means a crowded police academy.
This year’s recruitment class is the largest ever, a total of 160. Half are being trained right now. They’ll be joined by another 80 this fall. That compares to some recent years when there were no new recruits.
Public Safety Director David Wantz says that’s a lot of recruits, but they’ll find the room. "It certainly presses the instructors; it’s taxing on everybody, because it’s a lot of people," he said.
Indy committed to upping the police force by more than 100 last year. Both mayoral candidates have said they want to put another 150 more cops on the street, so this strain will likely continue.
Wantz says in order to get a recruitment class that mirrors the demographics of the city, they started with 3,000 applications for those 80 spots.
"You have to have a lot of them at the top of the funnel in order to get the high quality you want at the end. And you can’t do that quickly if you want to get the quality and diversity up," he said.
Wantz says all the new officers will have the equipment and patrol cars they need to do their job.