NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Hundreds of people attended the New Orleans Police Department “Stakeout for Justice” event held on Oct. 4.

The event serves as a yearly fundraiser for the NOPD.

This year, NOPD Chief Operating Officer Fausto Pichardo took the stage touting the city’s decrease in crime over the last year.

“The N.O.P.D and their departments have removed over 2,000 guns off the streets this year alone,” said Pichardo.

Pichardo gave his final remarks before he moves on from the department explaining what he brought to New Orleans from New York.

“The bottom line is really the retention piece, and the resource allocation piece,” Pichardo said. “When I first got here, there were probably at that time, over 150 police officers that had resigned. Not retired, but resigned. If you look at changing their working conditions, where they come to work and spend 12 to 16 hours a day, so ensuring they had what they need to do their jobs.”

Recruitment and retainment is something Interim Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick is largely focused on, calling it one of her “top priorities.”

In an effort to bolster their ranks, a job fair was hosted by the department and incentives were offered.

“We would be interested in anyone who really is the best of the best, to look at this opportunity to join one of the best police departments in this country,” Kirkpatrick said.

At the luncheon, Kirkpatrick also spoke of the need for donations to the New Orleans Police Justice Foundation and what they can do for the department.

“They can fund certain things that the city’s budget can’t do,” Kirkpatrick said. “That money is usually given to the police department for certain purchases or technologies.”

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