The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
DeKalb County residents will no longer see a police helicopter patrolling overhead.
DeKalb's police helicopter was grounded to meet a $4.7 million budget cut, according to a memo obtained by the AJC.
Johnny Crawford, firstname.lastname@example.org DeKalb's police helicopter was grounded to meet a $4.7 million budget cut, according to a memo obtained by the AJC.
DeKalb Chief William O’Brien grounded the helicopter to meet a $4.7 million budget cut, according to a memo obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
“Effective immediately, helicopter response to calls for service is very limited. Aerial Support is suspending all helicopter activities, operations and call-outs,” Assistant Chief Lisa A. Gassner wrote to staff on Thursday.
The helicopter will only be used for critical public safety emergencies, such as floods and officer-involved shootings, police spokeswoman Mekka Parish said. The officers assigned to the flight unit have been given other duties within the Special Operations division, Parish said.
Parish said the fuel, maintenance and other expenses associated with the helicopter are too costly during the current budget crunch. On Tuesday, the County Commission rejected a proposed property tax increase and voted to cut $33.6 million from the 2011 budget.