Officials Tuesday celebrated the success a three-year effort to reduce crime in Compton.
The reduction in crime — including double-digit declines in gang-related shootings and killings — was the result of a three-year partnership between the city, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, which patrols Compton, and federal agencies, officials said at a news conference at Compton City Hall.
The Violence Reduction Network was launched in 2015 in Compton and more than 10 other U.S. cities, according to the sheriff’s department.
The effort led to 4,092 arrests, several federal indictments and the seizure of 636 illegal guns, 80 pounds of explosives and more than 640 pounds of narcotics “including enough Fentanyl to kill nearly four million people,” according to a sheriff’s department statement.
“This program provided the LASD Compton Station technical resources, training and the ability for the Department of Justice and local officials to work together seamlessly to address 12 key areas of focus, including gang violence and prevention, human trafficking, mental illness and homelessness, at-risk youth, and trust-building in the community,” according to the sheriff’s department.
Sheriff Jim McDonnell said collaboration with agents at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Drug Enforcement Administration gave the Compton Station’s gang enforcement, narcotics and cyber-crime teams led to shared “intelligence-gathering, warrants service and major operations … .”
“The message to the criminals is: We are coming for you. And when we do, many of you will be looking at hard time in a federal prison, far from home and far from your gang affiliations,” McDonnell said.
“We will work together in ways you won’t expect. We will dismantle criminal organizations, take massive amounts of weapons and drugs off the streets and put in place community outreach programs that give youth hope.”
U.S. Attorney Nick Hanna said he expected safety and security to continue to improve in Compton thanks to the training provided over the past three years and the gathering and analysis of data “and the commitment of each and every participant to continue the partnership designed to keep this great community safe and thriving.”
Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said in addition to reducing homicides and other violent crimes the agencies are working to “decrease human sex trafficking and drug sales as a way to shrink funding sources used by gangs to buy weapons and drugs.”
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