PORT TOWNSEND — After more than two years, the Port Townsend Police Department is once again fully staffed.
With the department’s most recent hire, Ashley Moore of Hartsville, S. C., there are now 15 line officers.
Five of the officers, including Moore, are either in training or waiting for academy, said Police Chief Michael Evans. Moore was sworn in Aug. 15.
Other recent hires include entry-level officers Kelly Perry and Wendy Davis and lateral officers Todd Morrison and Julie Goode.
While the department is now fully staffed, because officers are in various levels of training the department will still operate similarly to if it were understaffed, Evans said.
“It’s a little juggling of personnel to cover everything,” he said.
“I can’t give enough kudos to our staff for all the work they are doing because everyone is doing more than one job.”
The plan once all the new officers are fully trained is to have two full-time detectives and a school resource officer.
Currently, one officer works both as a detective and on patrol, and a school resource officer is field training new officers.
Sergeants have been working patrol shifts and supervising.
Evans wasn’t sure how much overtime there has been to make up for having such a small staff, but said there’s been quite a bit.
“They are giving up their days off,” he said. “It’s hard on families.”
It’s not unusual for officers’ 10-hour shifts to go extra long because of calls at the end of shifts.
“We see the light at the end of the tunnel, but we still have the training to go through to get there,” he said.
Reporter Jesse Major can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 5550, or at [email protected].