Hiring Civilian Investigators is an Outstanding Concept (“Baltimore Police Aim to Be Among the First Law Enforcement Agencies to Hire Civilian Investigators to Fill Vacancies and Improve Solve Rates,” April 14 ).
Clearly the Baltimore Police Department and Commissioner Michael Harrison have thought through the implications. There will be training, but the training will not be as comprehensive and the physical fitness requirements will not be as high as the training of sworn officers who carry weapons and arrest violent criminals.
This is a new career path for people who majored in criminal justice in college, but are unable to meet the physical fitness standards for admission into the sworn officer track of the city’s police academy.
This is a great opportunity to add smart people to the police department who could support the work of sworn officers. There’s a lot of work that detectives do at a computer terminal that could be left to civilian investigators. Some of this work could be done remotely by disabled but smart employees.
It is encouraging that the BPD is expanding the pool of potential crime fighters.
Henry Farkas, Pikesville
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