"NPS Cut Its Special Agents By Nearly Half, Memo Shows"

"The National Park Service has reduced the number of criminal investigators who handle difficult cases by 45 percent over the last 20 years, and they will spend less time on property crimes and drug cases as a result, according to an internal memo.

The memo, obtained by the advocacy group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), shows the number of criminal investigators declined from 55 in 2003 to 30 in 2022.

Due to the cuts, the park service said these special agents would now focus on investigating violent crimes in national parks and “complex, felony resource investigations,” while also taking the lead on cases involving officer shootings or the significant use of force. The agents are a special unit that works with NPS’ law enforcement rangers on cases."

Rob Hotakainen reports for E&E News January 4, 2023.

Source: E&E News, 01/05/2023