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Federal grant to help Bridgeport hire more police officers

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BRIDGEPORT -

Officials in Bridgeport say they will be adding 15 new officers to the police force, thanks to a nearly $2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Justice.

The grant comes at a time when the number of homicides in the city is on the rise, around double of last year at this time.

Bridgeport's police chief says the extra manpower will lead to fewer crimes in the coming year.

The $1.9 million grant comes through a Department of Justice program that supports the hiring of police officers for crime prevention.

It will be the fourth time the city has received a grant like this in the last 10 years.

According to Police Chief AJ Perez, it will pay half of the officers' salaries for the next three years.

The other half will come from several other sources.

Some residents have protested the grant, fearing that accepting federal money commits the police department to work with ICE agents when a person's immigration status is up for question.

As for the new officers, officials are still working out the details, but hope they will join the force in March.

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