SLMPD officers to go on 12-hour shifts this summer

Published: May. 10, 2022 at 5:46 PM CDT|Updated: May. 10, 2022 at 9:21 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - Starting in June, officers with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department will be going on 12-hour shifts.

The longer shifts are due to concerns that crime could increase and because the department says it is short dozens of officers. The plan calls for the longer shifts to last at least through the end of September and would be on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

One St. Louis resident said he is concerned the long hours could put the public at risk.

“They could be putting their lives more at risk and they could be putting other people’s lives more at risk,” said South City resident Aaron Defenvaugh. “I would ask that just everybody that lives in the city would be diligent to take care of their neighbors and to take care of themselves, and to be responsible and try to take some of the burden off police officers.”

The memo from Chief John Hayden outlining the shift changes are below:

Commanders,

As the summer months near, bringing a likely increase in call volume and a higher propensity for violent crime, adjustments are needed to ensure we have the proper amount of personnel available to handle calls and maintain visibility. With a reduction in staffing, we must make changes that allow us to appropriately provide the service expected of us. As we all know, the weekend evening/night shifts can be some of the most challenging.

Because of this, effective June 10, 2022, all Officers and Sergeants assigned to either evening or night watch shifts in the Bureau of Community Policing/Specialized Enforcement will be placed on mandatory 12-hour shifts on Fridays, Saturday, and Sundays. Officers and Sergeants assigned to day watch shifts will remain on their standard 8-hour shifts. Again, this will only be in effect for the evening/night watch on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Personnel assigned to the evening watch will work 3 PM - 3 AM, and those assigned to the night watch will work 7 PM - 7 AM.

The Cruising Detail will remain in effect; however, the hours will be changed to 3 PM - 3 AM. Specialized Enforcement, except for the Traffic Division, will no longer be directly assigned to this detail and will concentrate their activities within neighborhoods/mission zones.

Each Major and Captain is asked to begin planning for the extra deployment of these officers, focusing on visibility and hazardous traffic enforcement. Adjustments will also need to be considered for those officers periodically affected by a “short changeover”.

Please start planning and address any questions/concerns through your chain of command. As stated, this will not take effect until June 10th, so personnel may have a month’s notice of this change for scheduled weekend shifts. This will be in effect through the end of September.