Vicksburg rolls out new crime prevention task force to reduce cr - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Vicksburg rolls out new crime prevention task force to reduce crime

Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT
Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT
Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. - Source: WLBT
VICKSBURG, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Vicksburg leaders are stepping up efforts to fight crime with the recent rise in violence in the River City over the past few months and rolling out a new crime prevention task force to help make the city a safer place to live.

Stopping the violence and increasing the peace is the major goal in Vicksburg for the new crime prevention task force committee. The mayor says it is a step in the right direction, but citizens just hope it works.

Lois Gaskin knows all too well about the violence in Vicksburg. Someone shot inside her home multiple times early Sunday morning killing her 21-year-old son Cortez Hardy.

READ MORE: Vicksburg man whose home was shot into dies at hospital

Police are still on the hunt for her son's killer.

“I want to see the shooting and crime stop in Vicksburg. We are losing too many young kids through bullets,” said Gaskin. “Whoever did it, please come forward and turn yourself in 'cause he was innocent because I can't sleep, I can't eat.”

Gaskin son's death brings the number homicides in the city to four in 2018.  According to police, they also have had several shootings around town and received more than 130 calls of people discharging firearms in an unsafe way this year.

“You cannot have a safe community and city if you don't have zero tolerance in crime," said Mayor George Flaggs. "It is absolutely too much killing and there's too much discharging in the city limit.”

Mayor Flaggs says the recent outbreak of violence has lead him to create a new crime prevention task force committee. The team will include police, citizens, lawyers, prosecutors and judges.

“Everybody on task force works for the city and interacts with crime one way or the other," explained Flaggs. "Fourteen people have been selected. We're gonna look at technology, we are going to look at social media, community policing, the ordinances, the judges and do we need mandatory sentences.”

Vicksburg Police Department Deputy Chief Robert Stewart is on the team.

“Getting all the ideas and strategies coming up, maybe we can mitigate some of it and I'm reduced the crime, making it safer for the community,” said Stewart.

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