West Michigan Community Claims Police Department Over-Staffed & Overly Aggressive

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BARRY TOWNSHIP, Mich. (June 23, 2014)– The Barry Township Police Department is at the center of a community controversy.   Dozens spoke out during a city hall board meeting Monday, some saying the department over-staffed and overly aggressive.

With nearly 2,300 people living in town, the department has four full-time and four part-time police officers, in addition to 34 reserve officers.

It’s a number that people who live there, like Tony Corsariol, said is too high.

“People don’t come by as much…people don’t come to town,” Corsarial said.

People avoiding the area, is something Corsariol said isn’t necessarily due to the amount of officers in town, but because they’ve grown fearful of the officers.

“These guys pull their guns out on a daily basis,” Corsariol said.

Many others also spoke out in anger about an alleged incident where a business owner was injured by one the officers while being placed under arrest. They even questioned the need for the amount of reserve officers on duty. Saying, 34 of those officers aren’t necessary with the small amount of people who live there.

However, an officer with the department also spoke, saying he’s been the victim of assaults while on duty. That, if it weren’t for reserve officers, he’d have to wait 15 minutes for back-up to arrive from Hastings, which ultimately puts his life in danger.

The board announced that they think the citizens’ concerns should be looked into. They wrote a letter to Michigan State Police asking them to investigate the accusations of harassment and if they’re staffing too many reserve officers.

A follow-up meeting is expected to take place on Tuesday, July 1.


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  • Anonymous

    Why are these people so worried about police presence. I would be asking those opposed to having police around what are they doing that is illegal that they don't want to be caught at!

    • anonymous

      Because they are harassing innocent citizens, pulling weapons on teenagers, and generally being asses. That's why, how would you like ti be pulled over 2 to 3 times a month because you get home from work at a late hour?

  • voice of truth

    Seriously? Maybe you should get facts straight before slandering the police. The “gun” that the rumor mill keeps talking about was proven to be a radio in the officers “off” hand….weapon still in holster. Also, residents are claiming “harrassment” …because they are NOT being ticketed? This sounds silly when you listen to them speak. They know they did something wrong, were given a break, so they bash the authorities. Crazy.