Police and faith-based leaders talk about summer crime prevention

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (June 12, 2015) – Police are ramping up plans to fight crime over the summer months. The focus will be on confiscating illegal guns and taking drugs off the street. Another big component is finding activities to keep teens busy and summer jobs to keep them out of trouble.

“You tend to see what we call the trauma months; June, July and August. You tend to see a lot more shootings that take place during those three months and that’s certainly what we’re trying to get ahead of this year,” said Reverend Charles Harrison with the 10 Point Coalition.

IMPD’s East District recently started a new effort to focus on known drug houses. The department has started assigning union officers to follow up on complaints regarding drug activity. In the past, the narcotics unit was overwhelmed with the number of complaints and these officers will be able to provide additional resources.

“The ones that aren’t assigned to narcotics units, we’re assigning to uniform officers taking the runs and we’re asking them in their downtime, what little downtime they have, to focus on those houses,” said Commander Mike Bruin with IMPD.

Commander Bruin said his officers will also focus on taking illegal guns off the street. He explains how drugs and guns go hand-in-hand. Officers will conduct routine traffic stops to look for any illegal activity.

Police and faith-based leaders also worry about teens during the summer. A program called Youth Jobs Indy begins at Fervent Prayer Church next week. It reached 500 kids last year, this year organizers expect to serve at least 200 kids.

“I think in order for us to overcome those challenges we have to make sure that the peoples’ needs are met and right now we’re starting with the young people,” said Pastor James Jackson with Fervent Prayer Church.

Volunteers and funding are still needed for the program. Anyone wishing to donate their time or resources can contact Rev. Harrison at 317-923-9197.

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