Northern Michigan Police Feel Impact of Fewer Officers - Northern Michigan's News Leader

Northern Michigan Police Feel Impact of Fewer Officers

Posted: Updated:

The Osceola County Sheriff's Department is feeling the effects of fewer police officers like many agencies throughout the state.

The number of officers in Michigan is down more than 16 percent since 2001. Some northern Michigan departments like the Marion Police Department no longer exist.

With the cutbacks, sheriff's departments, state police, and other agencies are picking up the additional work.

The Michigan State Police has lost 30 percent of its troopers in 10 years and staffing is at the lowest level in more than 40 years.

Osceola County has seen four deputy positions disappear over the past decade because of grant funding cuts and dwindling tax revenue.

The sheriff says the department has had to reduce road patrols because deputies are busy investigating complaints.

The state's population is down about one and a quarter percent from a decade ago. However, officers in northern Michigan say their workload has gone up, even with the drop in population.

The Michigan State Police has a recruiting class in training and plans to hire more troopers to help reduce the trend. 

9 and 10's Kyle Mitchell and Photojournalist Jeff Blevins have more on the declining number of police officers.