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Tacoma Police Department collaborating with University of Texas criminologists on crime reduction plan

Tacoma Police Chief Avery Moore presented data suggesting only a small number of people commit the majority of violent crimes.

Editor’s note: The video above was originally published on April 11 when the Tacoma police chief answered crime and safety questions from businesses during a virtual town hall.

TACOMA, Wash. - Tacoma Police Chief Avery Moore announced the department is formulating a new violent crime reduction strategy during a Tacoma City Council study session Tuesday.

Moore presented data to the council suggesting violent crime is highly concentrated in a small number of street segments in Tacoma. Moore said a small number of people disproportionately commit violent crimes.

Around 10% of offenders account for about 40% of crime, according to a press release from the department.

Moore said the new strategy will focus resources on a small number of places and people responsible for a majority of violent crimes.

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"The approach must, and will, involve the community, city agencies, and other stakeholders; be feasible and realistic given known resource constraints; and it must have the buy-in of all stakeholders, including rank and file officers,” said Moore.

The Tacoma Police Department will be working with criminologists from the University of Texas, San Antonio to help develop and evaluate the new strategies. They will also provide ongoing consultation to the department on violence reduction efforts.

Moore said the department will be working on developing the strategy through May and plans to have a draft ready to present to Tacoma City Council in June.

The strategy will be evidenced-based, be problem-driven based on empirical analysis and have measurable outcomes for success, according to the department.

“Police are a necessary, but insufficient resource to reduce violence,” said Moore. “The approach should be purposely built to bring together, in a single comprehensive plan, the best evidence for 'what works' to reduce violent crime. We will not employ race-based tactics like over-policing, 'stop and frisk,' or zero-tolerance policing.”

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