More NOPD officers will join a special task force to address the violent crime problem in the city, according to New Orleans Police Department Superintendent Michael Harrison .
The task force was created just before Christmas, and Harrison said because it yielded good results, he made the decision to double its size. That means 16 officers will now focus on pro-actively stopping violent crime.
Some of the new task force members are being pulled from administrative positions at headquarters, while others are being shifted from various districts. In order to make sure the districts are still adequately manned, more overtime is being approved for the officers who will remain there.
Harrison said has heard the criticism from residents about how frustrated they are with the crime problem, and he thinks the task force - because its already showing some results - will help.
"We started having some success over the Christmas week," Harrison said. "We had an uptick is robberies in the quarter. We had reserve officers come in to help patrol those areas around Bourbon and the back side of the Quarter. We had the task force created with eight officers. We were starting to make arrests. So around the city we are having some success, and what we want to do is double down on that."
Now the task force members will be assigned to whatever area in the city needs attention on that particular day. The focus will be on the entire city – not just the French Quarter.