LANCASTER, Calif. (2UG) – In a move to combat crime the city of Lancaster has created its own police department and has already sworn in its new police chief.
Due to a deade of unfilled vacancies in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department that forced deputies to work overtime, Mayor R. Rex Parris come up with the idea for his city’s own police department.
“It’s my obligation to keep the families in Lancaster safe,” Parris said. “I take it very seriously. And quite frankly I do not care who I offend. You cannot defund the police and have a safe society.”
Parris repeatedly brought up the “defund the police” movement in explaining his belief that a new police department would help lower crime in the city.
According to the Antelope Valley Press, Rodrick Armalin, the City of Lancaster’s former director of Public Safety was sworn in as the chief of the Lancaster Police Department on Tuesday.
“I care deeply about making Lancaster a great place to live and work, and an essential part of doing that is ensuring it’s a place where families can grow and thrive,” Armalin said in a statement. “Since I started working at the City of Lancaster, I’ve been committed to implementing more crime prevention programs that are already producing results. I look forward to stepping up our accomplishments with new programs, including drug education and human trafficking awareness campaigns targeting young adults.”
It is not known what the immediate cost-savings, if any, is to Lancaster residents as the City will continue its relationship with Sheriff’s department.
“We are going beyond commemorating the appointment of our new Chief Armalin,” Parris said in a statement. “We are laying the foundation for a new era of collaboration, community engagement, and shared responsibility. Our partnership with the LA County Sheriff’s Department remains strong and invaluable, and together, we are committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of our residents.”
According to the Antelope Valley Press, the council’s action mark’s the launch of the city’s community-led hybrid policing model. City police officers will work in partnership with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department as a dual force to bolster Lancaster’s public safety infrastructure. The primary objective of the newly formed police department will be to enhance, support and supplement the commendable efforts of the sheriff’s department.
Antelope Valley Press and Los Angeles Times contributed to this report.