Has Detroit become a safe place?
Has the new plan to cut gun violence worked?
It may be too soon to say if the plan to cut gun violence has worked in Detroit, but what we can say is that this year is on track to be a much less bloodier one than last year. Last year, Detroiters everywhere watched as the city experienced the highest homicide rate in 2 decades.
In 2012, New York had a homicide rate of 5 per 100,000 people, while Detroit’s number was 53 per 100,000. Detroit’s homicide rate was 10 times more than New York City’s rate.
Detroit Didn’t Remain Silent
Instead of sitting back, Detroit set a plan. This plan put together by Mayor Dave Bing is called Detroit One. Detroit One is a “collaborative initiative between law enforcement agencies and community residents to reduce homicides and other violent crimes in Detroit.” This effort had the goal of reducing gun related violence by 25%. The three pronged system started with agencies sharing information on chronic offenders and the last step was adding the prosecutor to the Detroit Precinct, but the Detroit Police Chief, James Craig, wasn’t done there.
Instead of having the police work 12 hour shifts, leaving them tired by the end of it, the Craig changed the shifts to 8 hours and officers could volunteer for 10 hours shifts.
All This Is Now Paying Off
This year, only 262 people have been murdered compared to the 303 last year. That is a 14% reduction in murders. Police Chief James Craig credited the first prong of the Detroit One plan. He was quoted by the Free Press saying,
They are searching for and arresting those wanted on warrants,” Craig said. “In a very strategic way, we are going out and looking for the people who are most likely to engage in violent activities.”
The year isn’t finished yet but things are looking up for Detroit. Craig also stated,
One murder is one too many,” Craig said. “But … we are trending in the right direction. And certainly, this is not by accident.”
It certainly looks like Detroit’s efforts are working and tending in the right direction. Your thoughts?