Local News

Durham Fights Back Against Violent Crime

Posted June 18, 2000

— Durham city leaders say 16 murders in six months is far too many. Sunday, Mayor Nick Tennyson announced new efforts aimed at ending the violence.

Hillsborough native Troy Taylor became Durham's16th murder victimwhen he was shot to death during a weekend visit. Taylor's body was pulled out of a burning rental car Saturday morning.

The crime ignited new fears about theBull City'smurder rate.

"I am outraged that my city is being dragged down by this series of pointless acts," says Tennyson.

The mayor announced three measures aimed at reducing violent crime:

  • Work with the leaders of crime prevention groups in Durham neighborhoods.
  • Regular police briefings to the city council on its crime-fighting efforts.
  • City council participation in a series of neighborhood meetings.

    "The way we combat crime is through the overall community attitude and its ability to muster itself, to report and insist on the type of protection our citizens should expect," says Tennyson.

    Major Steve Chalmers saysDurham policeare reducing violent crime throughgun buybacks, crime analysis, and other programs.

    "We will not stand idly by and allow our citizens to be preyed on," he says.

    Chalmers says he is worried about the murder rate. He says officers will work with residents to make their communities safe.

    "And we will continue to evaluate and re-evaluate our efficiency to ensure that we are operating in the most efficient and effective manner possible," says Chalmers.

    Some city and county leaders are also talking about a possible curfew for teenagers. Several of the murders this year have involved people under 18 years old.

    The mayor and city council members plan to hold a series of neighborhood meetings with Durham residents.

    They want to collect feedback by August 1, the date of the anti-crime program National Night Out.

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