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Thursday, August 24, 2006

Shelby County, Tenn. Continues Operation Safe Community

From commercialappeal.com: It may be the most ambitious anti-crime initiative in Shelby County history, located in Memphis, Tenn.-- Operation Safe Community -- and its creators say it's going to take a well-tooled game plan and everybody's commitment to make it work.

Wednesday afternoon, at least 50 law enforcement, juvenile court, parole and probation, city, suburban and county officials convened for a report on where the initiative stands. Shelby County Mayor A C Wharton joked the meeting was "historic" because there were more participants than in May, when the initiative was announced.

The engineers of Operation Safe Community are using as successful models the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort, a joint local and federal crackdown on felons with guns, and the Memphis Police Department's Blue Crush initiative, which targets hot spots based on crime data. Memphis Police Director Larry Godwin offered other successful models -- his undercover unit's infiltration of the Memphis gang structure and the Felony Response Unit, which has raised the rate of solved aggravated assaults from 16 percent to nearly 50 percent in one year.  Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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