SHREVEPORT, La. - United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown announced that state, local, and federal law enforcement partners, along with other civic and community leaders from the Shreveport area held meetings this week to develop strategies together to help one another as the violent crime in the Shreveport area continues.
In October 2021, the City of Shreveport was chosen to participate in the National Public Safety Partnership with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). The national PSP initiative that the City of Shreveport is involved in provides an innovative framework to enhance federal support of state and local law enforcement and prosecution authorities to reduce violent crime. The City of Shreveport was chosen to participate after an application was made in an effort to assist these leaders to fight violent crime. The PSP is a three-year program that is designed to promote interagency coordination between law enforcement agencies and to support communities that struggle with levels of violent crime far in excess of the national average and that would benefit from the DOJ’s support in developing their own capacities.
This week’s PSP Strategic Planning meeting was an opportunity for civic and community leaders, along with local and state law enforcement, as well as federal and state prosecutors, to get together in one room and make a list of problems to address and work on strategies to address those problems. This is one of the steps in the PSP process whereby all of these leaders get together and discuss problems, plans for solutions and strategies to address them and is a cooperative effort of these groups to continue to combat violent crime in the Shreveport area.
“I am excited to take advantage of the law enforcement and non-law enforcement expertise, experience and extensiveness of the DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) through its PSP program,” stated U.S. Attorney Brandon B. Brown. “The application process of Shreveport being designated as a PSP city was a very competitive process and we, along with the District Attorney’s office, Shreveport Police Department, Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, and our federal investigative agencies have been having law enforcement-based meetings with BJA for over a year leading up to this point. Now we’re ready for the next phase as we integrate relevant community partners such as Caddo Parish juvenile services, Shreveport city workforce development, Caddo Parish Schools, and other city/parish government related stakeholders. It is extremely refreshing to see the cohesion and support among our federal, state, and local partners as we proceed with formulating a violent crime prevention, rehabilitation and intervention approach going forward to supplement our law enforcement strategy.”
“The National Public Safety Partnership has assisted jurisdictions across America meet their most pressing violent crime challenges,” stated BJA’s Director Karhlton F. Moore. “This critical crime reduction program brings together components from across the Department of Justice to support local strategies designed to combat violent crime, strengthen communities, build bonds of trust, and deliver on the promise of public safety. The success of this program in Shreveport lies in the strong partnership between the community, Shreveport Police Department, United States Attorney for the Western District of Louisiana, and the Bureau of Justice Assistance.”
Shreveport Police Chief Wayne Smith commented: “Our community faces unique challenges with regard to crimes as do other cities across the country. I am very encouraged and embrace the greater possibilities and opportunities brought about by partnerships with our federal, state, local and community stakeholders to work together collaboratively and combine resources to improve the quality of life in Shreveport. We are much stronger together and this strategic planning session has helped all of us to establish agreed upon direction moving forward, along with strategies and action plans to accomplish a specific goal, which is safety in our community. I am eternally grateful to everyone that participated in this two-day strategic planning session for the Shreveport community.”
Caddo Parish Commissioner Stormy Gage-Watts stated: “Since receiving the award in 2021, we have worked collaboratively for solutions to improve our violent crime related issues. This opportunity has led us to develop and expand plans with our community stakeholders through prevention and implementation strategies. We are at a pivotal point in our history where we must maximize our strengths and acknowledge our challenges. Our mission is to make our communities safer by reducing our current statistics and providing hope for our future generations.”
Agencies in attendance at this week’s meetings included representatives from the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Assistance, U.S. Attorney’s Office, Shreveport Police Department, Shreveport Mayor Tom Arceneaux, select Department Heads from the City of Shreveport, Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, Caddo Parish District Attorney’s Office, Caddo Parish Juvenile Court, Caddo Parish Commission, Shreveport Fire Department, Shreveport City Marshal, Caddo Parish School Board Security, Louisiana State Police, Ochsner LSU, FBI, ATF, DEA, and U.S. Marshal Service.
Regular monthly meetings will be held with these agencies and civic and community groups to address violent crime strategies from a law enforcement standpoint and a non-law enforcement standpoint. Some of the strategies include rehabilitation efforts and reentry of offenders back into the community.
In addition to leadership from local and federal partners, DOJ dedicates specific individuals to support each PSP site throughout the three-year engagement, to include a retired law enforcement executive, a DOJ Program Office Champion to serve as the point of contact for the site, federal law enforcement partners, and a program advisor. PSP federal law enforcement partners include the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and U.S. Marshals Service (USMS).
PSP serves as a Department of Justice Department initiative that enables communities to receive coordinated training and technical assistance and an array of resources from the Department’s programmatic and law enforcement components. In addition to Shreveport, Louisiana, the other sites that were selected included: Antioch, California; Aurora, Colorado; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Gary, Indiana; Louisville, Kentucky; North Charleston/ Charleston, South Carolina; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Phoenix, Arizona; and Richmond, Virginia.
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