Photo by Paul Clinton.

Photo by Paul Clinton.

The New York Police Department is bracing to lose as many as 3,000 officers hired 20 years ago under the Safe City, Safe Streets program who are now eligible for retirement.

The losses will be somewhat offset by the 1,246 recruits sworn in last month, as well as another academy class in January. About 80 percent of NYPD recruits retire after 20 years of service, according to agency data reported by the New York Post.

City Councilman Peter Vallone told The Post the expected mass retirement could lead to higher rates of violent crime. "I think people should be extremely worried," he said.

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