Are city-wide surveillance cameras coming to Toledo?
A plan to add dozens of surveillance cameras, around the city, and improving police officer staffing are among the top priorities for Toledo's new chief of police Derrick Diggs.
Diggs was sworn in Friday morning and succeeds Chief Mike Navarre who held the position for over a decade.
Appointed by Mayor Mike Bell, the ceremony made Diggs TM Toledo TMs first African-American police chief.
It was standing room only for the swearing-in ceremony, held in the city council chambers, but Diggs TM ailing mother was absent.
The chief told the crowd he was looking forward to visiting with her and celebrating his promotion.
I TMm going to go visit my mom, and take this chief badge|and let her know her son is chief of police, Diggs said.
A member of Toledo Police for over 30 years, Diggs has some ambitious plans for the city.
I would like to get as many officers as I possibly can but somewhere between 625 and 650 is where I would like to be, Diggs said.
According to the Mayor's office, the Toledo police department currently has a total 550 police officers, civilian dispatchers, clerks and administrative staff working to keep the city safe.
During an interview, Diggs acknowledged the department was working at unprecedented staffing levels he believes are at a historic low.
By being promoted from within the department, Diggs does have the advantage of already knowing and beginning to implement initiatives he hopes will remedy the issue.
We'll be graduating 6 officers in a couple of weeks that went through what we call an accelerated police academy, Diggs said.
Diggs is also hoping a push to have overlapping police academy classes in training, simultaneously, will help speed up the efforts to get staffing up.
The city TMs new chief also says he plans of making 4 of the department TMs police officers tech gurus.
The designations will be of particular importance to Diggs TM plan of installing between 73 and 75 surveillance camera in strategic locations throughout the city.
Diggs TM says he hopes the video obtained from those devices will be recorded into a real time crime center where the activities can be monitored.
The chief says the project is still in the beginning stages but he TMs already determined the $800,000 to $1.2 million dollars needed to make it a reality would come from our law enforcement trust fund.
During his career, Diggs helped develop the Toledo Police Department TMs Mountain Bike Patrol Unit and the Gang Task Force Unit.
According to a release from the Mayor TMs office, Diggs additionally implemented and monitored several community oriented policing programs and strategies including neighborhood and park watches.
Diggs first joined the Toledo Police Department in 1977, was promoted to sergeant in 1986, to lieutenant in 1990, to captain in 1995 and then to deputy chief in 2001.
During that time he served in the Investigative Services Division, Operations Division, Support Service Division, Internal Affairs, Drug Enforcement, Special Weapons and Tactics Team, and Metro Drug Task Force.