Shawnee Police Chief Mason Wilson said the $250,000 grant awarded to the Shawnee Police Department from the Department of Justice will fund two additional full-time officers for the next three years and allow for more community policing in areas with higher crime rates.

“This is great news for our city and we are very thankful the Attorney General’s Office chose our City to receive these funds,” Chief Mason Willson said, adding the money will be used for salary and benefits for two officers over a three year time period,.

“We will use these positions to place officers in areas of our city with higher crime rates,” the chief said. “We want to place an emphasis on community policing in these areas. This will allow the citizens and officers in these areas to build a relationship and work together to lower the criminal activity.”

More than $500,000 in grants was awarded to four Oklahoma cities to enhance law enforcement, announced Mark A. Yancey, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma, and Brian J. Kuester, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Oklahoma.

While SPD received half of the funds distributed in Oklahoma, other grants were: Dewar Police Department: $69,208; Lindsay Police Department, $99,428; and the City of Sallisaw: $95,569.

These grants are part of more than $98 million awarded to 179 law enforcement agencies across the United States through the Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, also known as “COPS.”