Lack of village police leads to hiring cops with criminal records in Alaska: Anchorage Daily News

Village police officers in Stebbins, Western Alaska. The city is among over a dozen cities in Alaska that have employed police officers whose criminal records should have prevented them from being hired under state law, the Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica reported Saturday, July 20. (Bill Roth/Anchorage Daily News via AP/The Canadian Press)
In some parts of Alaska, local governments are so desperate for law enforcement they’ve had to hire people with criminal records. For example, in the village of Stebbins, all seven police officers have been convicted of domestic violence.

The problem is detailed in the second part of the Anchorage Daily News’ series called “Lawless,” which is looking at criminal justice in Alaska in conjunction with ProPublica.

ADN reporter Kyle Hopkins spoke with Alaska Public Media’s Casey Grove. Kopkins said Part 1 of the Lawless series — that found one in three Alaska villages has no consistent local police presence — built a foundation for the reporting in Part 2, out Thursday.

Feature Interview
For more on law enforcement, criminal justice and the challenges of providing public safety in small Alaska communities, listen to Alaska Public Media‘s Feature Interview with Kyle Hopkins, a reporter for Anchorage Daily News.

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: Police force in Northern Quebec faces officer shortage, CBC News

Finland: Police in Northern Finland overstretched, says retiring officer, Yle News

United States: Will a new policing strategy help fight crime in Alaska’s largest city?, Alaska Public Media

Casey Grove, Alaska Public Media

For more news from Alaska visit Alaska Public Media.

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