EAST PITTSBURGH, Pa. – The East Pittsburgh Police Department will soon be no more.
The Allegheny County district attorney told Target 11 that the department will be disbanded.
Developing: Allegheny County District Attorney tells Target 11 that remaining East Pittsburgh Police Officers will be laid off and dept disbanded. And State police will temporarily take over patrol duties until permanent solution is found #wpxi
— Rick Earle (@WPXIRickEarle) November 26, 2018
The future of the department has been in question since shortly after the shooting death of Antwon Rose in June.
Channel 11 expected to learn about the future of law enforcement in East Pittsburgh at a borough council meeting this past Tuesday, but no one was there when our crew arrived.
District Attorney Stephen Zappala confirmed to Channel 11 that the remaining East Pittsburgh police officers will be laid off when the department is dissolved.
“East Pittsburgh’s probably going to go out of business, policing business, maybe by the end of the year,” he said in an interview last week. “I’ll be having some discussions with state police about that so the technology guys have been down there around East Pittsburgh, North Braddock, Turtle Creek and they’re looking to saturate those areas so if the state police are the patrol agency then they can have eyes in those communities.”
Pennsylvania State Police will temporarily take over patrol duties until a permanent solution is found.
At an October meeting, Channel 11 spoke to the East Pittsburgh council president about the future of law enforcement there.
“We’ve had several meetings with the state, the county, and surrounding communities,” said Dennis Simon.
Soon after the June shooting death of Rose, 17, by East Pittsburgh police officer Michael Rosfeld, council members announced they were disbanding the department. But months later, no changes had been made.
Allegheny County Police declined an offer to take over that department, and the North Braddock Police Department. There was also talk of creating a regionalized police force.
At the time, the idea of using Pennsylvania State Police was being considered as a last resort because officials were worried response times would be too long.