The department is authorized to have 783 sworn officers but is currently more than 100 officers short. It's holding a local hiring event this weekend.
A possible time frame for “The First 48” to begin filming in Gwinnett was unclear Tuesday. The initial agreement included in county documents granted production crews from Kirkstall Road Enterprises increased access to Gwinnett detectives for up to a year.
Commission Chairman Charlotte Nash was quick to point out that the county would have 60 days to cancel the agreement if it chose to do so for any reason.
Commissioner John Heard, who made the motion to approve the agreement, said he’d hesitated about inviting the documentary series into the county but was reassured by Chief Ayers.
Gwinnett County police handled a total of 29 homicide cases in 2016 and, as of mid-July, had seen 16 so far in 2017. Ayers said his department was approached by “The First 48” because it’s high clearance rate, which is generally in the 88 to 90 percent range.
The board’s vote to approve the agreement with “The First 48” was a unanimous 4-0. District 3 Commissioner Tommy Hunter was not present for Tuesday’s meetings.
The embattled commissioner, who has appealed the decision in his lawsuit challenging the ethics board that recommended his recent public reprimand, was believed to be out of town. Half a dozen or so anti-Hunter protesters attended the meeting and spoke out during its public comment period.
The board's previous meeting had been the first since Jan. 18 — the day after The Atlanta Journal-Constitution first reported Hunter's infamous Facebook post calling U.S. Rep. John Lewis a "racist pig" — in which no protesters attended.
MYAJC.COM: REAL JOURNALISM. REAL LOCAL IMPACT.
The AJC's Tyler Estep keeps you updated on the latest happenings in Gwinnett County government and politics. You'll find more on myAJC.com, including these stories:
Never miss a minute of what's happening in Gwinnett politics. Subscribe to myAJC.com.