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City accepts grant to pay for anti-gang officer

January 24, 2007

The Hagerstown City Council accepted a federal grant Tuesday that will provide funding for the Hagerstown Police Department to hire an anti-gang officer.

Washington County received about $112,000 of a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Attorney's Office that was distributed statewide to several organizations and government agencies to combat gang activity, U.S. Attorney's Office spokeswoman Marcy Murphy said Monday.

Hagerstown Police Chief Arthur Smith said Monday that Hagerstown will receive about $55,000 from the grant - roughly half of Washington County's share.

That money will pay the salary and benefits of the anti-gang officer, he said.

During a City Council work session Tuesday, Smith said the police department will move an experienced officer to the anti-gang position, and hire another officer to fill the vacancy.

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The grant took effect Jan. 1, he said.

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