By: KDKA-TV News Staff
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The president of the Fraternal Order of Police Fort Pitt Lodge 1 is predicting mass retirements from law enforcement this fall.READ MORE: Allegheny County Police And Corrections Officers Unions Sue Over COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate
Robert Swartzwelder says 284 Pittsburgh police officers will be eligible for retirement in October. He told KDKA that many will retire, in large part, because of criticism from Mayor Bill Peduto and District Attorney Stephen Zappala on the police’s handling of the Black Lives Matter protests.READ MORE: Governor Tom Wolf Proposes Legislation To Strengthen Protections For Students And Combat Sexual Assaults On College Campuses
“They are pinching the police in the middle. They are putting them in a precarious position where police officers feel that no matter what they are going to do, they’re going to be criticized by the two highest-level politicians out there, which is then going to change public opinion and force negative ramifications on the police officers. Some police officers are going to say, ‘OK, you don’t want us? We’ll go and do something else.'”MORE NEWS: U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle Won't Seek Reelection In 2022
Mayor Peduto has already put a freeze on police hiring and plans to hire social workers to fulfill some duties.