Police Chief: Hiring Limits Could Hurt Diversity in Ohio

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OREGON, Ohio (AP) – A northwest Ohio police chief says proposals that would limit who can be a police officer could hurt minority recruitment.

The Blade reports a state commission is mulling whether to include some misdemeanor convictions as grounds for disqualification. A felony conviction eliminates recruits under current policy.

Oregon Police Chief Mike Navarre says the move could reduce police chiefs’ discretion. He says those hiring new officers should be able to review the entire situation for applicants.

Toledo Police Chief George Kral says he agrees that additional criminal disqualifications would hurt recruitment and wants the department to mirror the community.

Attorney General Mike DeWine says the review board will consider diversity before making a decision.

New requirements for police recruits would also include passing physical fitness, psychological, drug and polygraph tests.