By PETE BANDA
By 5:30 in the morning, he’s already sifting through a pile of e-mails, text messages, and phone calls. As the Chief of Police for the San Benito Police Department, as well as the Emergency Management Coordinator for San Benito, Micheal Galvan oversees two of the biggest divisions within the City of San Benito. Serving as Assistant Chief for nearly four years, however, has prepared Galvan for the amount of work needed for the job.
“I was already familiar with the responsibilities, but it is a little harder to try and get everything done,” said Galvan. “We’re going through a bit of a transition with changes to some of our policy and a little bit of understaffing, but as long as I can continue to my job as efficiently as possible, we’ll be okay… we have a great staff as it us so San Benito is in good hands.”
There are currently four openings within the Police Department, but because of policy, those positions cannot be filled until another graduating class of the police academy comes through, which could take anywhere up to a year to happen. In the meantime, the Department is hoping an array of updates to policy will keep them ahead of the game.
The Department has made it mandatory for all officers to wear body cams and is in the process of mapping out high crime areas to arrange for more police presence in those areas. Galvan also believes it would be a good idea to install more cameras throughout the city.
Overall, Galvan said they have gone through over 400 pages of policies to make sure all of them are in tune with the changes that have occurred over time. Still, the Police Chief believes the thing that San Benito will most benefit from is the community coming together to reject all crimes.
“When I say we want less crime, that includes all crimes,” said Galvan. “We don’t have enough officers to prevent crime everywhere in the city, but if the people of this community can continue to be the eyes and ears that we need, then we can make a big dent in the overall crime rate here.”