The Pennington Gap Police Chief Jacob Kilbourne says the 21st Century Policing grant awarded to the department earlier this month amounts to $12,000. Kilbourne says the money will go to a bicycle patrol program, as well as community and business watch programs. With drug crimes on the rise, the department hopes the grant will help reduce crimes related to prescription drug abuse.
Kilbourne kick-started a community advisory committee in October to represent citizens' views on their concerns. He reported that the department takes at least 8 or 9 medication theft reports every week and that businesses are also being targeted for theft. Although the department does business walk-in checks daily, they hope that increasing visibility will reduce drug-related crimes.
Kilbourne said they will receive the bicycles to begin patrols at the beginning of January. The community and business watch programs will meet once a month to address their concerns.