Interim Police Chief James Davis announced the start of a Violent Crime Task Force on Aug 14 to "saturate" the streets, looking for people who have committed armed robberies following two on Aug 13. He is pictured here at a June 2018 press conference.
Photo by Ko Bragg
JACKSON Following two armed business robberies in the City of Jackson on Aug. 13, Interim Police Chief James Davis announced that members of the Jackson Police Department and the Jackson-Hinds S.W.A.T. Team would "saturate the city" to bring those individuals to justice through a Violent Crime Task Force.
"Due to the increase in violent crime here in Jackson, we have formed a Violent Crime Task Force, and that task force is to target individuals that take it upon themselves to terrorize our communities by sticking up stores, individuals in these stores," Davis said at a press conference at JPD Precinct 1 in south Jackson.
JPD Public Information Officer Sgt. Roderick Holmes said in an email to the press that two armed-robbery attempts happened at the Little Caesars Pizza in the 4500 block of North State Street and the Dollar General in the 600 block of Raymond Road just after 3 p.m. on Aug. 13.
"In both instances, the suspect entered the locations, armed with a handgun and demanding cash. The suspect was not able to take anything from Little Caesars but did take an undetermined amount of cash from the Dollar General," he wrote.
No one was injured in either incident, he added.
Davis said this task force began due to a trend of business robberies, and mentioned that local television stations have shown surveillance tapes of these robberies in recent days. In practice, he said officers will patrol the streets looking for anything unusual. It is unclear how this program will differ from normal policing.
At press time, no arrests were made, and the matters are still under investigation.
Davis said he believes this will be effective in responding to cries from people who say they do not feel safe in the community. JPD will be looking for anybody out violating the law, people with illegal guns and those who fit the description of suspects, he said
The interim chief police they will also serve warrants, and those wanted should turn themselves into JPD.
He maintained that his department would not be targeting people who are "great citizens in the city of Jackson" who are not fearful and love the police. "The ones who committed the crimes and feel fearful, put your guns down," he said. "If you're afraid of going to jail, put your guns down, stop robbing innocent people."
This reporter asked how JPD will ensure this does not become a profiling situation as the department hits the streets specifically looking for people who look suspicious.
"It's not profiling. The community welcomes this; the bad guys may not like it," Davis said. "The community wants to see the police department proactive. We're not targeting individuals. We're just looking to bring those individuals that commit these crimes to justice. Our community is looking for help, and we're the saviors."
Email city reporter Ko Bragg at [email protected].