Nearly all officers who quit the Dallas Police Department have less than 10 years of experience, according to department statistics presented Monday to members of the City Council's Public Safety Committee. Most of those who depart have less than five years with the department, reports the Dallas Morning News.
And this year, the department is losing slightly more of their younger guns than usual.
Of the 52 officers who have quit this year, only one has more than 10 years of experience. Forty-two more officers have retired.
Deputy Chief Albert Martinez said the department estimates it will lose 217 officers this fiscal year to resignations, retirements or "other" — which Martinez called an "unwilling separation" — meaning firings and deaths. They also lost eight all at once to the Fort Worth Police Department.
Martinez said he expects the projection to be pretty accurate.
That means police would shrink more through attrition this year than expected. The department's budget this year called for hiring 165 officers this year on the assumption that about 200 would leave. The year prior, the department hired 220 people and had 204 officers bail.
Dallas Police Chief David Brown has tried to mitigate the loss by moving officers off desk jobs and replacing them with lower-paid civilian workers — ones who don't cost tens of thousands of dollars to train.
Police associations, and former Dallas police chiefs, cried foul when the city approved hiring below attrition, saying the problems would only be exacerbated when times were bad. Retired Chief Bill Rathburn warned that doing so would start a "vicious cycle."