Reporter; Dhomonique Ricks | Videographer: Daniel Heffner
Lynchburg, VA - Lynchburg Police is struggling to recruit and retain quality officers.
Five years ago they were hiring on average one out of 38 applicants, and now they say only one in 70 meet their requirements.
They say the biggest complaint is the salary. Lynchburg Police Department's salary is about $3,000 less than the regional average. LPD officers who have completed basic school take home about $30,500. The chief of police says the salary gap is hurting them badly, and experienced employees are leaving at an alarming rate.
"Thirty-eight percent of the LPD's experienced officer work force has turned over in the last 4.5 years. We're losing officers to private sector and public sector," said Chief Parks Snead.
Officials say the average employee has four years or less officer experience. LPD says they're exploring their options with City Council.