STOCKTON (CBS13) – At a time of sky-high crime, the Stockton Police Department is getting some new officers to help clean up the streets.
Nine new police officers were introduced at a ceremony at the department Monday afternoon.
The city is adding to the police force to combat the growing crime problem. There have been 50 homicides in Stockton this year and hundreds of gold chain robberies, including one in which a male victim was shot to death.
The new officers understand they have begun a dangerous job.
“You want to help people, and I think we can do that. That’s my main goal,” new officer Ryan McCarthy said. “I’m very excited get my career going and serve the city that I was born in.”
Nobody knows what 22-year-old Ryan will soon face more than his father, Steve, who spent nearly 30 years on the force.
“There’s a little nervousness there,” Steve said during Monday’s ceremony. “It’s very dangerous, especially at nighttime. I hope he’s safe and I have all the confidence in the world that he’ll do a good job.”
There are now 331 officers on the Stockton police force.
They are planning on hiring 13 more officers this year. Then a federal grant will kick in allowing the city to hire an additional 17 officers.
Of course, the city of Stockton is having serious financial trouble. Earlier this year, it became the largest city in the U.S. to file for bankruptcy. But city officials say they will continue to spend on public safety because of the serious crime issues on the streets.
A police spokesman said Monday’s swearing-in ceremony was one of the largest in department history.