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ArlingtonPublic SafetyArlington police to maintain downscaled service levels

Arlington police to maintain downscaled service levels

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Arlington residents will continue to experience a certain degree of do-it-yourself policing as the Arlington County Police Department struggles with recruitment and retention.

The goal is “focusing our investigative and response efforts around more serious criminal incidents and concerns,” police said.

Police Chief Charles “Andy” Penn on March 29 detailed ongoing changes to existing procedures that will result in less responsiveness in some areas so the force that remains can concentrate on core responsibilities.

“I am confident that despite our service adjustments, we will continue to work in partnership with the community and remain proactive in ensuring public safety,” the police chief said. (His remarks can be viewed at https://police.arlingtonva.us)


Some of the changes were first put in place during the early days of COVID, and will be maintained into the future. In some cases, officers will not be dispatched for calls of service, but individuals will be directed to provide information online or by telephone.

County officials are planning major pay raises for public-safety personnel in the coming budget cycle, but it may not be enough to retain experienced personnel who have grown weary of how they perceive their treatment by some in the community and among their leaders, and can find more lucrative opportunities elsewhere.

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