Temple police adds batch of new officers to help contain violence on North Philly campus
PHILADELPHIA - Hours after a batch of recruits graduated the police academy to join Temple's police force, two incidents happened on campus that underscored the safety challenges facing the school.
According to Temple police, a person with a gun was spotted by a security officer inside the cafeteria of Morgan Hall and was arrested by responding officers.
Around the same time, police responded to a report of two individuals firing pellet guns at people near the intersection of Willington and Berks streets. Authorities have not reported any arrests.
Temple University added eight new officers to its force on Friday. The department, like many around the country, is struggling to entice new recruits to help protect the North Philadelphia campus.
"There's a lot more that they need to do than hire new officers, I think, it's a much more deep-rooted problem here," Gerson Malave said.
The department is still mourning the loss of Sgt. Chris Fitzgerald, who was shot and killed during a struggle with a suspect who was arrested a day later in Bucks County.
In recent months, Temple students have been victimized by crime like home invasions, causing some to question if they're going to continue their education in Philadelphia.
"As of right now it's something to think about," Julie Dress said. "It's something I'm not sure about, but I'm hoping that as time goes by it gets better."