HALE COUNTY, Ala. (WIAT) — The Greensboro Police Department (GPD) received grant funds that will allow the department to hire five new officers.  

Officer Eric Wiggins is hoping more officers will mean less crime.

“It actually will mean more feet on the ground to help us patrol and increase community relations,” said Wiggins. “In these times right now more officers will help and will benefit the department and the town as a whole.”

GPD received a $562,000 grant from the Department of Justice to go toward hiring new officers. This effort is a part of a nationwide initiative to advance community policing.  

Officer Wiggins says adding more officers is a big deal for the small department.

“We have zero tolerance for crime.  And if we know about it we are going to do our best to stop it,” said Wiggins. “I know it’s kind of hard to stop crime, but if we can be out there and put that buffer to protect these innocent bystanders that’s what our main focus is going to be.”

Currently the department has seven patrol officers and three supervisors.  After being hired, the five new officers are expected to start sometime in January.