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Unified Police taking over West Valley Police Department?

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – There's some gossip floating around right now about big changes coming for West Valley Police. Rumors are circulating that Unified Police are going to take over the West Valley Police Department. ABC 4 Utah sent Brian Carlson to find out if it’s true.
WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah (ABC 4 Utah) – There's some gossip floating around right now about big changes coming for West Valley Police. Rumors are circulating that Unified Police are going to take over the West Valley Police Department. ABC 4 Utah sent Brian Carlson to find out if it’s true.

You may have heard the rumors- Unified Police is supposedly going to take over the West Valley Police Department. Given all the issues West Valley is facing right now, including allegations of corruption, to some it may make a lot of sense. But Wednesday when ABC 4 Utah’s Brian Carlson talked to the West Valley City Manager and the Salt Lake County Sheriff, they both said it's not true.

"Nope, categorically not true right off the bat, I don't know where the conversations or the rumors might be coming from," said Wayne Pyle, West Valley City Manager.

"I think the rumors that we are immediately going to engage in a merger I think are exaggerated," said Jim Winder, Salt Lake County Sheriff and Unified Police Department.

So the rumors may be false but West Valley and Unified Police have talked to each other about it.

"We actually have reconsidered that question here in the recent past I would say the last few weeks," said Pyle.

And Unified is interested.

"It's something we desperately want to do," said Winder.

But West Valley doesn't want to do it.

"We need our own police department, we have our own services that are unique to West Valley and our area and we're best suited to provide them," Pyle said.

"The question they have to ask themselves is - Is it time to engage in a different style of policing? That is what the Unified Police Department offers," Winder said.

So maybe that time isn't now, but it's not something the West Valley is ruling out.

"We're always reevaluating our services," said Pyle.

"At this point in time, I think West Valley is moving in that direction, but at this point those conversations have been stalled," said Winder.

Some of the reasons why West Valley doesn't want Unified coming in and managing their police department, they said their city is very large, it's people are very diverse, and when it comes down to it, they want to control their own police force.

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Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @tv_briancarlson
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