Bowling Green Set to Hire First Batch of Police Officers Since DOJ Investigation
The Bowling Green City Commission will vote Tuesday on the hiring of ten police officers. This will be the first round of hiring since the federal government launched an investigation into the hiring practices of the city police department.
Among the new hires are four African-Americans and one Hispanic. The city has been working to recruit and hire more minorities since a Department of Justice investigation last summer found the city should have more black officers based on its population.
While some changes have been made to recruit more minority candidates, Human Resources Director Mike Grubbs says the city is still hiring the overall best candidates.
"The police department looks at character for hiring. They can train someone to be a police officer," Grubbs told WKU Public Radio. "Candidates have to meet certain minimum requirements, which all of our candidates did, but they have to have good character and good background, and the department has not wavered on that."
Since the DOJ investigation, Bowling Green has created a special committee to recruit more minorities to the police force. In this latest round of hiring, committee members were included in the candidate interviews.
Grubbs says minority candidates made up more than 20 percent of the most recent applicant pool.