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Radio station warns listeners to be safe in French Quarter

Published: Jan. 13, 2015 at 2:26 AM CST|Updated: Jun. 29, 2016 at 8:56 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - You may have heard the ads. They're being broadcast on a local radio station, urging listeners to be safe while in the French Quarter.

In between the hit songs played on B-97 and light-hearted commentary provided by its hosts, listeners hear this message, "All The Hits B-97 wants you to be aware, when walking in the French Quarter or anywhere in the New Orleans area, walk in large groups. It's time to take back the streets."

"This is near and dear to everybody's heart," said Jammer, host and director of programming at B-97. "We're an entertaining radio station, we're a mass-appeal radio station, and we've just got to get the word out."

Jammer came up with the idea to release three promos after he felt crime had reached a boiling point. "It's just really insanity out there, and it's reaching a point where no matter what time of day you're going out or what you're going to do - young, old, whatever you are - there's a problem," Jammer explained.

A newly formed Violent Crime Task Force is trying to combat the problem. In fact, this past weekend, the task force, along with Eighth District officers, made eight arrests.

"We are seeing a reduction with persons crimes as far as we're starting to see a turn," said NOPD Cmdr. Jeffrey Walls.

Three of the men arrested are accused of trying to holding up guests at a hotel in the 500 block of St. Charles Avenue. Another man was picked up for drug-related offenses.

"They're making armed robbery perps, they're making yes, juvenile curfew arrests, but the bigger picture is they're wanted for armed robbery, they're wanted for cutting their ankle monitor off, stolen property, different things," Walls said.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu, speaking at the start of training for 29 new police recruits, says the task force will be effecting change not only in the Quarter, but across the entire city.

"All of us have to be protected and not just one neighborhood over another," Landrieu said.

The best way the department will be able to keep people safe, city leaders agree, is by putting more boots on the ground, which, thanks to these new recruits and another class soon to graduate, is already underway.

In an effort to get more officers on the force, Landrieu proposed doing away with an education requirement. According to our partners at NOLA.com | the Times-Picayune, that proposal was shelved after all seven members of the City Council last week signed a letter to the mayor asking him to withdraw his request from the Civil Service Commission.

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