A pair of stabbings reported just minutes apart inside the City of Chico, stretched the police department beyond its limits forcing officers to ask the Sheriff to cover the second crime scene.
"This is the second time in the last week in which we have relied on the Butte County Sheriff's Office to assist us," Lt. Mike O’Brien said.
The first call came in around 9 p.m. Sunday when officers received a report of a stabbing on Nord Avenue near W. Sacramento Avenue.
While officers were investigating the stabbing that was reportedly the result of a verbal argument, officers received the report of a second stabbing on E. 20th Street.
"Certainly it is concerning. This happened to be two significant incidents on a Sunday night. Normally Sunday night is somewhat calm," O’Brien said.
Because seven officers were needed to handle the initial response to the Nord Avenue stabbing, Chico Police couldn't get to the second crime scene at The Handle Bar for 14 minutes.
At the second incident officers had to rely on sheriff’s deputies to control the scene, where they later arrested a juvenile male for stabbing two adults.
Officers ran into a similar situation Wednesday when the patrol staff was committed to a call when the report of a daughter stabbing her mother came in with no officers to respond.
"It is nice to know that we have allies in agencies such as the Butte County Sheriff's Office and the California Highway Patrol to assist us during the those moments," O’Brien said.
The need for additional help comes after the department disbanded several special units including: the traffic, drug and street crime units in order to put more officers on patrol.
The department also added its first new officer in three years last month, but that came only after a three year hiring freeze that saw a loss of eleven officers to retirement.
The police department has put the hiring process on hold for a couple open positions as the new city manager works on plans to reorganize the city's management structure.
But, once that is completed officials say they should be able to hire for those positions quickly.