Akron's New Police Chief Adds Officers and Hopes to Bring on More

Dec 20, 2017

Mayor Dan Horrigan with newly sworn-in Chief Ken Ball. Ball became interim chief after former Chief James Nice abruptly quit amid allegations of an affair with a subordinate and using racially charged language.
Credit Tim Rudell / WKSU

Akron’s new police chief, Ken Ball, took the oath of office today, and talked about an overall vision for the department. He also addressed some immediate issues like staffing.

Ball says getting back to appropriate staffing levels is a critical goal.  He says job offers have just gone out to six pending police academy graduates, and plans are proceeding to bring on 15 more officers. The addition of those 21 hires will raise the department to its authorized headcount of 455.  Ball says further personnel additions may be possible down the road.

“The mayor and I have talked about adding positions beyond that. And that will be an early 2018 discussion after I develop a plan for staffing within the department to justify each of the positions that I will be asking for.”

The new chief says passage of a quarter-percent income tax hike last month made the hiring and some equipment upgrades possible.