NORFOLK-- A new program kicks off Monday in the 3rd patrol division of Norfolk to help fight crime in the city.

Last month Chief Mike Goldsmith told 13News certain officers will now work 12-hour shifts, with the goal of creating a stronger bond between the police department and the community.

There will also be two officers in every patrol car and more bicycle officers on the streets.

The division affected includes areas of Ghent, Park Place, and areas around Old Dominion University and Naval Station Norfolk.

'We've been looking at changing shift schedules for a long time on the police department to try and figure out how we might better distribute our man power,' said Goldsmith.

Goldsmith said the department also plans to redistribute manpower in the 3rd patrol division.

Third Patrol Division Police Captain David Huffman said the goal is for officers to get to know the community and for residents to feel more comfortable with police and what they're trying to do.

'It also allows us to put officers in regular car districts so they get to see the same citizens in the same areas and they get to learn who is supposed to be in those neighborhoods and who's not suppose to be in those neighborhoods,' said Huffman.

The department will also be analyzing officer fatigue during this time, as well as absenteeism.

Goldsmith said he wants to make sure the pilot program works on a small scale before it is implemented in other patrol divisions.

The program will be reevaluated after six months.

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