Effort to eradicate violent crime in East End and Northside

By Sunni Blevins - bio | email
Posted by Phil Riggan - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Richmond's Police chief says an effort to eradicate violent crime in the city is paying off.

Police are focusing on neighborhoods in the East End and Northside with the "Fugitives and Firearms Initiative."

This initiative targets wanted persons and illegal guns.

20 strong -- Richmond police are teaming up with officers from the state police and the Richmond Redevelopment and Housing Authority  --  together they're cracking down on violent crimes.

A round of applause for a job well-done. The goal: eradicate violent crime in Richmond.

Focusing on the city's East End and Northside -- the fugitives and firearms initiative is underway.

"This team is very mobile, so if we have some hot spot integrity that we need to maintain a flash or pan or some area we need to address quickly, we can send them there as well," said Richmond Police Chief Bryan Norwood.

Numbers show the fugitive and firearms initiative is accomplishing it's goal.

To date, officers assigned to this effort have made nearly 50 felony arrests, 90 misdemeanor arrests and served more than 70 warrants.

They've also conducted more than 350 field interviews, seized 55 firearms and also taken thousands of dollars worth of drugs and drug money off the streets.

"By pooling all of our manpower and resources, we can make a substantial difference in the communities and the lives of the folks that live in those communities we think, and thanks to this commitment here, we are doing that in Richmond this summer," said Col. H.C. Davis, Virginia State Police.

And it's paying off -- at least in the Northside where this initiative has resulted in an 80 percent reduction in aggravated assaults involving firearms.

"They feel the pressure out there and that's where we can't to keep them," said Major John Keohane. "We want to keep the criminals off balance and let them know that we have a strong presence of police officers looking to get these firearms off the street."

The fugitives and firearms initiative runs through September.

This is a community effort -- so if you have information about wanted persons or illegal guns in the city -- call the police tips line at 514-TIPS.

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