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Durham leaders discuss ways to reduce crime

Posted December 18, 2015

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— Local law enforcement and other representatives from Durham traveled to Boston and Kansas City to learn ways they can reduce violent crime. A group of the representatives met Friday to discuss how best to implement what was learned on their travels.

Funding from the Department of Justice allowed the city to send two groups – including the mayor, city manager, police and pastors – to find out how other municipalities were successfully reducing violent crime.

A recent report showed Durham’s homicide rate is up 47 percent from this time last year. One big takeaway from the group's travels was how to properly use community policing, which is a popular strategy used to build relationships between police and local communities.

The group said it also learned Durham needs to do a better job of developing partnerships.

“We really haven’t been able to pull partnerships of community people together as we've seen demonstrated in Kansas City,” said Durham Mayor Bill Bell.

The pastors in the group emphasized the need for community involvement in making any lasting change.

Community member Phillip Jackson, who runs a construction-based job training program geared to high-risk men in Durham, attended Friday’s meeting.

“I’ve been working with young men in and out of trouble for the past 16 years,” he said. “I just wanted to be there to hear what the findings were and what the city was going to implement to try and curb the violence.”

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  • Timmy Astral Dec 20, 2015
    user avatar

    In order for any city to become safe, the police needs the help of the community. Granted right now there are cities where police do not deserve the help of the community, but not here in Rocky Mount, Durham, or Raleigh. This is why we formed "The Observers Neighborhood Watch Program". A system designed for residents to help out law enforcement without ANYONE knowing who they are. www.TheObserversTV.com

  • Matthew Freling Dec 19, 2015
    user avatar

    What is allowed is what will continue.

    I realize our police have far more important things to trouble themselves with than infractions (like one headlight, speeding, failure to signal, tailgating, etc), but maybe if some resources were directed at small stuff (in a pleasant manner, not like gangbusters), maybe that will show a presence and encourage an environment of compliance.

    I will say I have the utmost respect for our officers. They have a mostly thankless job, and I would like to think that 99% of them are awesome people just trying to enforce the rules and keep the peace ...which is probably why they don't tend to sweat the small stuff, and hang back to make sure nothing major goes down.

    Side note: great job on addressing the crime rate issue, and I greatly appreciated the uptick in check points. Thank you!

  • LetsBeFair Dec 18, 2015

    here is an idea, back your police officers. Because right now no criminal is afraid of them.

  • Roscoe P Coltrane Dec 18, 2015
    user avatar

    If NC would do what they are supposed to do in carrying out death sentences and stop this "life without parole" krape. Go further and include rape and child abuse/molestation, to be open to capital punishment.

  • LetsBeFair Dec 18, 2015

    You protest the police in public and criticize everything they do, then complain about violent crime increase up 47% ???? really?