Cincinnati police: New shooting range in response to noise complaints would cost millions

Cincinnati police: New shooting range in response to noise complaints would cost millions
Leaders in neighboring communities want the city of Cincinnati to move the police department's gun range out of Evendale. (Source: Village of Lincoln Heights)

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Building a new firing range for Cincinnati police to replace the one they’ve used for decades in Evendale, which is drawing noise complaints from leaders in neighboring communities, would cost millions, police officials said Monday.

Cincinnati police would need about 30 acres of land and a 40,000-square-foot building, Assistant Police Chief Teresa Theetge told Cincinnati City Council’s Law and Public Safety.

Building a new outdoor range would cost $4.6 million, and the cost of an outdoor one would hit $9.7 million, she said, adding that those costs do not include the purchase of land.

Communities to Cincinnati: Move your police firing range

Cincinnati police said they have tried to be good neighbors at the range over the years. The facility is used 300 days a year and provides nearly 50,000 hours of training for officers annually.

It’s also used for police canine training.

Police have built a large concrete wall and limit shooting hours, according to Theetge.

They do not shoot before 9 a.m. and try to wrap up by 3 p.m., she said.

There are rare occasions, she noted, where the facility is used at night and on Saturdays.

However, the mayor of the village of Lincoln Heights, Ruby Kinsey-Mumphrey, told the council committee gunfire can be heard until 9 p.m. and it’s not fair to residents, children in particular.

Woodland Mayor-Elect Brian Poole joined Kinsey-Mumphrey at Monday’s meeting to express concerns. They also brought video with sound they say is from the gun range and played it.

They said they do not want to buy the gun range, they are requesting the city move it.

Police Chief Eliot Isaac said it’s his understanding shooting only occasionally occurs at night at the range and if that’s not the case he will look into it.

He stressed that if shell casings are found in the neighborhood, those must be from other gunfire in the area because all shooting is contained within the range.

Like Theetge, Isaac said CPD intends to continue trying to be good neighbors but, he noted, “training must continue. We have over 1,000 officers who need to continue training.”

What’s more, he said, the police department is facing other expenses, including the need for a new District 5 station.

Vice Mayor Christopher Smitherman thanked Kinsey-Mumphrey and Poole for coming in. He said it would take unanimous approval from council and a capital expenditure for a new range to happen.

He said council would continue to look at the issue in the coming year.

“We won’t solve this today,” he said.

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