D.C., area police departments get COPS grant to hire extra officers

The Metropolitan Police Department has received a $1.25 million grant from the Department of Just to hire 10 police officers to focus on street crime in the District, authorities announced.

The grant from Department of Justice Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, or COPS as it also known, goes into affect this month and will be used to focus mainly on street robberies involving electronics such as iPhones and cell phones.

“In cities around the country, criminals are focused on the robbery and theft of small personal electronics, which are almost as good as cash,” D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier said in a release.

Last year, the District received about $625,000 under the COPS hiring program. The program provides the salary and benefits for officers for three years.

Arlington County Police also received a $625,000 grant to pay for the salaries of five school resources officers and benefits.

In Prince George’s County, Seat Pleasant and Bladensburg police departments received $87,000 to hire a police officer each.

The Baltimore police department is receiving more than $1 million in federal funds to hire 10 new officers, and Hagerstown is getting $250,000 to hire two officers.

The COPS Office is responsible for promoting community policing and has awarded more than $14 billion since 1995.