Update: Forest Park reinstates police patrols at night

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UPDATE: The Forest Park City attorney issued a statement on Thursday, saying all police shifts have been reinstated in Forest Park.

Don Smitherman said the town held a special meeting and reinstated the night patrols.

 

FOREST PARK, Okla. - People who live in Forest Park say they're locking their homes up tight. In the coming days, when the clock strikes 11:00 p.m., there will be no police patrolling their streets.

"Last night the town council voted to suspend all third shift operations," said Matthew Cline, President of the Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 153. "That means there will no longer be a police officer working during night time hours in Forest Park."

According to Cline, the city has been paying to keep an officer on call for over a year, while they looked for an extra officer.

Now that money's gone, but the city wanted to keep their on-call officer.

"We came back and said, that's not gonna work," said Cline. "They said OK, no more police officers at night....they've had multiple home invasions and burglaries when there hasn't been an officer present."

The recent late night crimes include murder.

The body of Anthony Lewis was found inside his Forest Home park home with gunshot wounds days before the vote.

He wasn't found till Saturday morning, but it's believe he was killed during the night shift.

Now less than a week later, a motion to effectively get rid of night time patrols passed unanimously, citing budget constraints.

"I'm hoping that doesn't result in an increase in crime," said Sabrina Plog, longtime Forest Park resident.

"The bad guys are out there," said Sabrina's husband, Jody Plog. "They will realize there's not a police force here."

Cline says while calls to police in Forest Park will be taken by nearby departments, the response will be delayed...for their first responsibility is calls they receive in their area.

KFOR reached out to Forest Park city officials, but our calls were not returned.