CrimeFeaturedPolice AccountabilityThe NorthSider

City police rack up $14 million in overtime, audit finds

ST. LOUIS (AP) — City police spent nearly $14 million on overtime while struggling to fill 100 vacant positions, an audit has found.

State Auditor Nicole Galloway faulted police for lacking policies to monitor excessive overtime and said that the department understood that the situation was “not sustainable.” But she added that the situation would probably be helped by the state repeal last week of the requirement that officers reside within city limits.

The audit, which was released Monday, found that eight employees doubled their salary using overtime, and an additional 99 earned at least an extra 50 percent of their base salary with overtime.

Galloway said officers assigned to the homicide division and federal task forces were among those filing for overtime at high rates, saying, “It speaks to the crisis of crime and violence the city has been facing for some time.”

The audit also uncovered issues with officers who worked second jobs, including several instances of officers who were paid for working two jobs at once. The duplicated time could be a result of time sheet errors, but one employee’s case was referred to the FBI, the audit said.

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