LENAWEE COUNTY, MI (Toledo News Now) – A disturbing trend has been noticed in Lenawee County: Residents are getting more violent toward police officers.
Over the past three months, at least six people in the sheriff's department have been injured on the job. Most of these have been minor assaults, but one road patrol officer has been off work for a few weeks after being assaulted at the county jail, and is still recovering.
Every time an officer responds to a call there is risk involved, but Lenawee County Sheriff Jack Welsh said he's had to make more trips to the hospital to visit injured officers than ever before.
"It's frustrating to me, as a sheriff, to see some of these things happening," Welsh said. "The people that we're dealing with seem to be more aggressive."
Welsh said the department is overloaded with complaints, which may be part of the problem.
"It takes longer to get a back-up to an officer," he said.
Recently, Sheriff Welsh requested more funding from the county commissioners to hire more officers, but budgets are tight for everyone.
The other possible reason for the increase in aggression may be related to drugs and alcohol.
For now, Welsh said he will work with what he has and try to come up with ways to cut down on this scary trend.
"I don't know for sure how we can cut down on violent acts, but there has to be a more efficient way for us to respond to complaints," he said.
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