ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — As we continue to see violent crime spike in Rochester, local leaders are expressing support for additional help from federal agencies and other law enforcement groups to help address the crime.
Mayor Lovely Warren and Monroe County Executive Adam Bello both agree the extra support will be helpful as Rochester has seen 34 homicides this year and 11 in this month alone.
“People are literally dying every day in this community and it’s a tragic, it’s tragedy anytime anyone loses their lives, and it’s a senseless violence. We have to get these guns off our streets,” said Monroe County Executive Adam Bello. “It’s also people living in neighborhoods where there is gun fire erupting daily. Their kids can’t play outside, they can’t be outside because they don’t feel it’s safe and we have a responsibility to do something about it.”
Rochester Police Chief Herriot-Sullivan said Thursday she plans to work with federal authorities to target known violent offenders and potentially present federal criminal charges. Mayor Lovely Warren says Herriot-Sullivan has been working on this effort for a while.
“I am excited about it because I know that the chief has been working on a plan and making sure she connected with the other folks and allowing the data to drive her decision,” Rochester’s Mayor Lovely Warren said.
Chief Herriot-Sullivan said she plans to work with federal authorities to target known violent offenders and potentially present federal criminal charges. She also said she wants people who commit violent gun-related crimes to stay in jail and not be let out in bail.
“What she believes is the most problem here, has really been that these violent offenders have been let go, out of the system and put back out on the streets to be able to commit a crime again, so her goal is to make sure that violent criminals are held accountable and this is a way for her to be able to that,” Mayor Warren said.
City councilmember Malik Evans, who is expected to be Rochester’s next Mayor, says he has a lot of plans to help reduce crime and his administration plans to start working on them right away.
“As a young black man growing up in Rochester, I have seen violence first hand. 17 years old, I had someone killed right outside my house, literally at my doorstep, so this resonates with me. I am tired of seeing particularly young, African American men being killed early on and we have to make sure we have a comprehensive strategy with that and we will be working on those plans now.”
The Monroe County Sheriff’s department plans to also provide additional support to Rochester’s Police Department. On Thursday, Sheriff Todd Baxter announced how they will be helping.
County Executive Bello said he is in favor of multiple departments teaming up to help address gun violence.
“There is no one silver bullet. Law enforcement cannot solve this by themselves, there has to be a law enforcement presence, but they also need that support that can come from all the various county departments that we have. Our social workers are involved, our probation departments involved, and it also includes community partners as well so we’re just happy to be part of this collaboration,” Bello said.
Bello also said the county will do whatever it can to make change.
“I will pledge Monroe County will spend whatever resources necessary that it takes because this is the number mission of government, is health and safety, so we will spend whatever it takes and do whatever it takes to keep people safe,” Bello said.