Federal grant will add more cops to three Utah cities

In the fight against crime, the U.S. Department of Justice is arming 179 law enforcement agencies — including three Utah police departments — with more officers.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Monday that nearly $100 million has been awarded to the agencies through the DOJ Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) to hire 802 full-time officers.

The West Valley City Police Department was awarded $250,000 to add two more officers to its force, while the American Fork and La Verkin departments each received $125,000 to bring one officer onboard.

The COPS Hiring Program (CHP) provides funding directly to state, local and tribal agencies to support the addition of officers for three years to address crime, according to a DOJ news release.

“Cities and states that cooperate with federal law enforcement make all of us safer by helping remove dangerous criminals from our communities,” Sessions said in the release.

In addition to hiring officers, the grants are used to develop policing strategies and provide training and technical assistance to local government leaders and communuity members, the news release says. The COPS Office awarded $98,495,397 in this latest round of funding, bringing its total since 1994 to more than $14 billion.