LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Members of the River City Fraternal Order of Police voiced their concerns Tuesday night over Louisville Metro Police Department Chief Steve Conrad's reorganization plan. The chief was on a peace walk in west Louisville during the FOP meeting.
"I think the patrol divisions are feeling a sense of loss," Chief Conrad said.
Officers with the FOP are taking issue with the chief's move to dismantle the FLEX platoons; which combat quality of life issues and complaints in neighborhoods.
"They have the opportunity to pull together an ad-hock working group if they have a particular problem with street robberies or burglaries," said Chief Conrad. "They can pull small groups of people together to function much as the FLEX team do now."
Dave Mutchler, the president of the FOP, said in a statement that this idea would, "take an important option away from division commanders to combat crime and narcotics trafficking in their respective divisions."
He also noted that no one was consulted about dismantling the units.
"I don't lead by consensus," said Chief Conrad. "This is a decision that I have made. I'm responsible for it and I'll be held accountable for it."
Ridding of the FLEX units will strengthen the SWAT and supplement the narcotics unit, which the chief believes is driving a great deal of the criminal activity in Louisville. However, the chief admits this frustration among officers has created a rift.
"Morale tends to fluctuate, but what doesn't fluctuate is our commitment to making Louisville as safe as we can," Chief Conrad said.