Police chief discusses 2016 plans

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) Following Monday night’s shooting in front of a woman and a child that left one man in critical condition, the police chief is discussing what’s ahead in 2016 to reduce crime.

In 2013, Fort Wayne saw 42 homicides, a record high. In 2014, homicides were the lowest they’ve been in the last 20 years, with 14. Last year was somewhere in the middle, at 28.

According to Chief Garry Hamilton, gang and drug-related homicides were down. The Gang and Violent Crime Task Force Unit recovered 84 handguns and made 478 arrests which resulted in 755 charges filed.

The chief said this year will depend on the community coming forward.

“It’s hard to say. It really depends on the commitment from citizens in the community. I really think, we have to work with them and we have to do our job as well but if they see something, I need them to report it,” Chief Hamilton said. “We start getting information and building patterns and where these people hang out. That helps us and it also helps the city and we start taking these individuals off the street.”

This spring, the chief plans on adding another officer to the gang and crime unit, get every uniformed officer a taser and fit about 100 of them with body cameras.

“It’s really important that we come with a policy that’s fair and impartial.”

He also hopes to have officers saturate more areas to target armed robberies and commit to community outreach programs like Coffee with a Cop which has lead to arrests and people in the community wanting to pursue becoming an officer.

“We’re going to continue to fight for the city. We’re going to continue to embrace the community to be there for them and to offer any services that we’re able to provide.”

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