Greenville Police Department in need of updated firearms, office - Telemundo Amarillo

Greenville Police Department in need of updated firearms, office space

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GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Protecting and serving our community, it's what Greenville Police Officers do every day on the job. The Greenville Police Chief Ken Miller said it can be challenging with outdated firearms and overrun space. 

"We have units that are split between floors or between buildings, and it's not ideal from a space allocation standpoint." Chief Miller said. 

The law enforcement center is home to sheriff's deputies and police officers. A building built in the 1970s, the city said it's been at capacity since the 80s. 

"We have consumed the space and then some," Chief Miller said.

He said it's time for a new home base. Until then, he and Greenville City Council are working toward a temporary solution.

An ordinance was brought up at Monday's meeting. It would allow officers to lease new office space, requiring $120,000.

"The ordinance provides us some space, some capacity relief, by enabling us more space for a couple of our specialized units in the police department."  

The first reading of the ordinance passed by all council members. There will be a second reading in February. 

Miller also addressed the second ordinance, which also passed on Monday. It focuses on outdated firearms.

The chief said some of the firearms on the force have not been updated for more than 20 years. A normal time frame is about 10 to 15 years.

"Officers have two hands, and they're trying to control a subject with a firearm," Chief Miller said.

To lighten up the situation and provide more safety for these officers, a special campaign called SafeReach was started to provide mounted weapon lights. The goal is to equip officers with flashlights mounted onto their weapon, which requires a special holster. 

SafeReach, a part of the Greenville Police Foundation, has already raised $20,000 toward the cause, but now they're asking the city for support. There will be a second reading for the second ordinance in February. If funding is provided, the chief said these updated firearms could be used by May or June.

Anyone in the community looking for a way to help, can click here for more information.

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