Knoxville — Knoxville's newest police officer will start with the department on Monday, Oct. 15.
Kyle Eastwood, 26, of Pella, was recently hired to fill a vacancy on the department. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Iowa State University. He will begin his field training with an officer, then receive further training at the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. Police Chief Dan Losada said he expects Eastwood to be available for full-time patrol in six months.
The department has invited eight applicants to test on Nov. 7. They will test for the new position with the department, made possible through a federal grant. Grant specifications include that the person must be a veteran. The Knoxville School District has agreed to share the City of Knoxville's costs for this officer, in exchange for reinstating the School Resource Officer program.
Losada said he has not determined who will fill the role of School Resource Officer. He will make that decision after the grant officer is hired.
In other police department news, the department has encountered more people driving while suspended, or without insurance this year.
"We're very concerned about that," Losada said. In addition to fines that these drivers will face, the department will also impound the vehicle immediately. The driver and his/her passengers will have to be prepared to walk home or find another ride.
Earlier this week, the department filed charges against someone who sexually assaulted a woman as a child. Victims abused as a child have the right to file a complaint, which leads to a police investigation, up to 10 years after their eighteenth birthday. In this case, the department investigated the alleged victim's claims and found that she had been abused.