Binger Residents Concerned About Safety

Sunday, February 22nd 2009, 11:17 pm
By: News 9

By Jon Jordan, NEWS 9

BINGER, Oklahoma -- Binger residents have bragging rights, their tiny town is home to baseball great Johnny Bench. But the 700 people who live in Binger are concerned about their safety. Financial trouble forced the town to do away with its police department.

Many residents believe it was the police chief who drove the department into the ground after making unnecessary expenses, but the former police chief said that was never the case.

"They told me the budget was tight, but everything I ever needed was put it front of them and approved," Former Binger Police Chief David Butler said.

Meanwhile, the police department which has been sitting vacant for nearly a month, has left residents in the area with little police presence, except for sheriffs deputies who will occasionally patrol the area.

Binger residents said they are now taking it upon themselves to watch out for their neighbors.

Former Chief Butler said if he had known there were going to be financial issues related to the town, he never would have taken the job.

NEWS 9 found several cities across the country have also cut police, fire and health departments due to financial constraints.