CrimeTracker: Recent gun violence prompts NOPD initiatives

CrimeTracker: Recent gun violence prompts NOPD initiatives

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - "We are more determined now than ever to take violent offenders off the streets," NOPD Chief Michael Harrison said at a Tuesday news conference. "We are putting all of our efforts together to make that happen."

As Harrison promised a renewed effort to stop gun violence, his detectives were investigating five armed robberies in 24 hours.

"People are taking advantage of other citizens who are vulnerable, so our officers are committed. We are taking the fight back to the street," Harrison said.

Of the five overnight robberies, the most violent incident unfolded in the 8000 block of Lakeshore Drive, where police said a man was sitting in his truck near the Lakefront when he was approached by several people. The man was pistol-whipped and his truck was stolen.

Two of the armed robberies happened in the Eighth District, which includes the French Quarter and Marigny. In one case, in the 300 block of North Diamond Street, police developed a composite sketch of the suspect. They said the gunman in that case approached a woman and demanded her purse.

Harrison said incidents like these will not be tolerated.

"So, I want to put as many officers out there everyday as often as possible to deter that type of activity," Harrison said.

Harrison said 27 new recruits will soon hit the streets, and overtime is now authorized for officers already on the job.

"The gang unit is going to double its work, and we're focused on reducing crime," Harrison said.

State Police are also dedicated to staying in New Orleans, while the ATF and DEA committed to a lasting partnership with the NOPD.

"They've gotten permission all the way from Washington D.C. to collaborate with us," Harrison said.

"We will be conducting gun analysis on every crime that's available to us to pursue federal charges," said Special Agent in Charge of the ATF Constance Hester.

With the new initiatives in place, Harrison wants his message to be clear.

"If violence is the life you choose, then prison will be the price you pay," he said.

If you want to know what's going on in your neighborhood or even on your street, you can check out our interactive CrimeTracker map. It will show you every armed robbery from Jan. 1 of 2014 until June 30.

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