Small Missouri Town Disbands Its Entire Police Force

The small town of Garden City, Mo., disbanded its police force Wednesday, the department announced on social media.

According to the department, Chief Thomas Alber was told to lay off his entire staff immediately.

“No explanation was given nor plans to staff the police department beyond the Chief,” the department wrote on Facebook. “No further guidance was given for pending criminal cases or coverage of the city when the Chief is not on duty.”

The town of about 1,600, about 50 miles southeast of Kansas City, was staffed by seven officers and five civilian volunteers. But it is already largely covered by the Cass County Sheriff’s Office, which responds to emergencies in the town.

The sheriff’s office will continue to handle emergency calls and patrol the area, according to NBC affiliate KSHB. Previously, a deputy would respond to calls if no police officer was available.

“We don’t have someone in Garden City 24/7, but many times when they didn’t have someone on duty, we usually respond to emergency calls down there anyway,” Cass County Sheriff’s Capt. Mitch Phillips told the TV station.

Phillips said the nearest deputy was stationed in Harrisonville, about 12 miles away.

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SOURCE: The Washington Post, Eli Rosenberg