Public demands response to violent crime surge

Published: Sep. 2, 2022 at 8:06 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - In the past week, the NOPD investigated more than 10 homicides bringing the total murder count to 198 so far this year.

“Carjackings are up 7 percent and armed robberies are up 42 percent,” says Rafael Goyeneche.

Rafael Goyeneche of the Metropolitan Crime Commission says violence across New Orleans is surging at a level that has the community living in fear.

“It’s finally reached a tipping point, and the public demanded that something be done,” says Goyeneche.

City leaders are hoping former NYPD Deputy Chief Fausto Pichardo will change things. He’s been hired to restructure the NOPD, at a time when crime is surging and manpower is depleted.

“We’re down over a third of what we need to police this city right now,” says Goyeneche.

Goyeneche points out that it will be difficult to figure out how to deploy officers in a way that combats crime.

“He will want to know the crime rate, but he is going to try to also address the lag in response times,” says Goyeneche.

It could mean finally hiring more professional civilians to respond to non-emergency calls, freeing up officers to handle more violent situations.

“In certain high crime times, there may be two man units deploying, so you don’t have to wait for backup to respond to a priority violent call for service,” says Goyeneche.

Many welcome Pichardo and the changes he will bring.

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