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Lawrence Police Department getting its own station after 90 years

Posted: 12:18 PM, Apr 26, 2018
Updated: 2018-04-26 12:18:13-04

LAWRENCE, Ind. -- The Lawrence Police Department has been fighting crime since 1929. But it has never had a station to call home. 

After nearly 90 years, that is changing. 

Right now, the Lawrence Police Department is housed inside the city's government center. 

More than 50 officers work in small spaces and evidence is kept in a less-than-ideal basement. 

"I see it almost every day where somebody walks into this building and they see me in uniform and they ask where the police station is," Chief David Hofmann said. "And I tell them, 'Well, you're in it.'"

In order to keep up with the city's flourishing population, they're moving out of the government center. 

A brand-new police station will sit on the 5100 block of N. Post Road, less than a mile away from 42nd Street and Post Road, where a majority of the department's 911 calls originate. 

"We know that the residential growth and the business growth in the City of Lawrence is going to demand increased law enforcement services," Hofmann said. "We just want to be prepared to deliver those services."

One resident and business owner eager for the addition will be right next door. 

"It's huge," Amy Potter said. "It's huge and not just for us in their backyard, but for everybody. We'll not have to worry anymore. We're thrilled about having them next to us."

The chief wants to reassure residents that this by no means a response to a spike in crime. 

Mayor Steve Collier said the $12.9 million station won't cost residents a dime, thanks to a bond already in place.

"There will be no impact upon property taxes or increased taxes," Collier said. "Citizens won't see any kind of increase at all."

The new station will have a community room, fitness center and the city's 911 dispatch center. The department anticipates breaking ground in late spring or early summer, and moving in mid-2019.

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