BLANDFORD, Mass. (CBS/AP) — The entire four-member police department of a small western Massachusetts town has resigned, citing poor equipment and unsafe working conditions.
Interim Police Chief Roberta Sarnacki and three officers submitted their resignations in a letter to Blandford officials on Monday, effective immediately.
The officers said the town’s police cruisers are in such bad shape they often have to answer calls in their personal vehicles. They said their police radios don’t work in some parts of the town and bulletproof vests are beyond their expiration dates and fit poorly to begin with.
Town officials say emergency calls will be answered by Massachusetts State Police, which released a statement Tuesday saying it will “assume any additional duties required in the wake of the resignations of local officers.”
“The residents of Blandford may be assured that the State Police will continue to protect their community,” the agency said.
The officers on the force said they regret leaving the town without coverage, but have no other choice because their own safety has been put at risk.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)