Violent crimes are sweeping the metro area, but we're discovering a new program is kicking crime to the curb, protecting you and establishing a long term solution.
The Metro Area Crime Elimination program is made up of several entities that have joined together to create a solution for the crime problem in Jackson.
"There was always shootings around here. Always a lot of shooting around here," said one Jackson resident. "They didn't care if there was kids or anything. Just bang, bang, bang, bang."
Violent crimes were saturating neighborhoods off West Capitol Street years prior. The heart of the crimes centered around Galvez Street. We talked to an area resident who didn't want to be identified, but said he has lived in the area for more than 20 years and has seen the crime first hand.
"I always felt scared for my family," said the resident. "I put security doors on the house, bars on the windows, always hoping it would slow it down anyway and give me a fighting chance."
After little 3 year old Armon Burton was killed while asleep in the bed with his father in 2014, the Hinds County Sheriff's Office, Jackson Police, Mayor Tony Yarber and the Hinds County Board of Supervisors decided it was time for a change. They created the Metro Area Crime Elimination program.
"This thing can't work without community involvement and without social services involvement and without the religious community involvement," said Hinds County Chief Deputy Chris Picou. "We have to have everybody come to the table."
MACE has already seen dramatic decreases in violent crimes in the metro. The goal is not to harass and arrest, but with social services and data collection, find out who is committing crimes and why they are committing the crimes. After that data is collected, offer outreach services to create long term solutions and productive citizens.
"There's a lot of changes and I like it," said a Jackson Resident. "The sheriff and police department have been a lot more visible over here, which we need. A lot of the crime has moved away or slowed up."
Looking at an overall of The overall decrease in violent crimes as of 2015 is more than 34 percent.
Picou said with the new funding from the Lt. Governor's office of 100 thousand dollars for research and data collection, the momentum will continue.
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