Ashland Police proposes expansion

Ashland, Ore. — The Ashland Police Department is proposing a police force expansion. The proposal comes just four days after a stabbing in Lithia Park.

Ashland Police Department is proposing adding five new police officers to its force. It says it needs them to keep up with growing need. Blake Henry is the manager of Brickroom Restaurant in Ashland plaza.

He said spending $400,000 on five new police officers would be well worth it.

“The amount of money that’s going to come out. It sounds excessive but if we didn’t have it come out for that. What would it go towards,” Henry said.

Brickroom Restaurant is located in Ashland’s plaza – close to this week’s stabbing.

Henry is satisfied with the way the incident was handled.

“They were there within minutes. Everything was taken care of, controlled, and I haven’t seen that in a while,” he said.

However, he said there could always be room for improvement.

“I just think that having more police presence is going to make people feel safer,” he said.

Henry’s been working in the restaurant industry for 15 years and said adding more police is a good idea for the growing business population in Ashland. Especially for restaurants that serve alcohol.

“In this industry where you sell alcohol or alcohol is consumed, it’s inevitable that something may occur,” he said.

Though Henry is concerned about crime in Ashland, he knows too much of anything can become a bad situation, including police.

“Being present doesn’t mean you have to always be out there. that could be a little excessive as well,” he said.

Currently, Ashland is budgeted for 28 police officers and 27 are on staff.

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