Violent crime task force sets date for City Council progress update

Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 11:02 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Mayor Cantrell announces the demolition of a business her violent crime reduction task force found to be a cause of concern in the city.

The announcement comes as council member Helena Moreno says the task force is overdue for a progress report.

Moreno sent a letter to 911 call center executive director and head of the task force Tyrell Morris requesting a 60-day benchmark update on the task force’s progress, something she says the mayor committed to when she formed the task force in January.

Morris responded, saying there was never a commitment to a benchmark. He said he plans to report on results at an April 5 council committee meeting.

“If we can get the trash out of people’s eyes, as I’ve always said, then we can clearly allow people to see progress and also where we want to go and where we want to be and stay,” said Cantrell at a press conference.

Paradise Carwash in Mid City will soon be leveled.

Mayor Cantrell announces the demolition of a business that was a scene of a homicide
Mayor Cantrell announces the demolition of a business that was a scene of a homicide(WVUE FOX 8)

The defunct business was the scene of a homicide in January.

But Catherine Washington has lived in Orleans Parish her whole life.

She says there are more pressing issues plaguing her community like dangerous potholes and high electric bills.

MORE: New Orleans mayor establishes violent crime task force following deadly start to 2023

“If she wants people to vote for her and be there for her, she has to help the people out here,” said Washington. “Don’t just get out here on TV and say what you’re going to do. Do it. Help.”

Mayor Cantrell was short on specifics when asked for an update on the task force’s data collection.

She claimed not to have said there would be data to see within the first 60 days of the task force formation. However, at the January 11 announcement, Cantrell said, “Truly, that 60 mark, being able to back it up with data, what’s worked, what hasn’t, how do we tweak, how do we move forward, what did we digress in, what did we move forward? But just a road map that charts our course every single day.”

Also, at the initial press conference, the mayor suggested the task force would have something to show for its daily work.

“The comprehensive recommendations come as we look at the data daily. Interventions happen daily,” said Cantrell. “You don’t wait. You use that data daily.”

Moreno asked for information on the frequency and turnout of task force meetings.

“I got a question this morning about how many meetings we’ve had. I’m not interested in meeting to meet. I’m interested in work. So, we meet when it’s necessary,” said Morris.

Cantrell defended her commitment to ensuring members of the New Orleans City Council are engaged regularly by looking to the April 5 public hearing.

“Understand that the entire New Orleans City Council can participate in any committee meetings that are held,” said Cantrell. “That’s the responsibility of the New Orleans City Council.”

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Click Here to report it. Please include the headline.