NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Norfolk Police are looking high and low for some men and women to join the force and that search has expanded to people they already know but have since retired from the department.

“Anybody who’s thinking about coming back, don’t think about it, just come on back,” said NPD Assistant Chief Daryl Howard. “Obviously if you were on the job long enough to where you retired, you’ve got a love for what we do.”

Norfolk City Council approved Interim Police Chief Mike Goldsmith’s request in late July to bring back former officers to help with the shortage.

Right now, the department still has about 263 sworn officer vacancies to fill, 6 retirees have already answered the call.

“In our detective division, we have some of our retirees working on the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network, which is a pretty new tool that works on investigations with firearms,” said Assistant Chief Howard. “This gives them an opportunity to do that as well as remain an active participant in helping solve crimes which is what they were obviously born to do.”

Assistant Chief Howard says they also have some retirees monitoring red-light and speed cameras. The department hopes having retirees helping out will eventually free up more uniforms for patrol.

“Quite frankly, that’s where we are having our biggest challenges as far as staffing and, of course with patrol, that’s pretty much the core of our services to our citizens,” said Assistant Chief Howard.

Assistant Chief Howard says they still have a long way to go staffing-wise, but every person plays a part.

“If everybody takes the attitude of one person more it can be a positive influence and that helps us a great deal,” said Assistant Chief Howard. “Anybody who is part of the solution is welcome here and that’s the way we kind of look at it.”

If you’d like more information about joining NPD, click here.