Chillicothe Police announced a new anti-crime initiative on Friday.
Police Chief Roger Moore calls it “Operation Stand Up" because he says a key part of the plan will involve citizens taking a stand against blight, drugs, and crime in their community.
The first phase of the operation got underway in November, with the selection of an undisclosed high-crime target area of the city. Detectives have been in that neighborhood gathering data and intelligence about the sources of the problem.
Once they have that information, they move to Phase 2, with an officer assigned to that neighborhood 24/7, along with a nuisance and code enforcement officer to try to weed out the problem residents.
Stage 3 will involve stabilization, establishing “Crimewatch” zones and a citizen’s police academy.
"This has never been tried,” said Police Chief Roger Moore. “What I've done before is just attack the drug dealers and high criminal element from one division, the Investigative Division. This is all the resources that we have for a prolonged period of time into one community. And then, trying to stabilize that community as we leave."
Moore says the operation will be carried out with no additional funding, just adjustments within the Police Department’s budget.
Mayor Jack Everson says no new funding does not equal no chance of success. “It's focus,” he said. “It's refocusing of the resources. I think that the way this plan has been drafted is pretty brilliant in the approach to that. So we're going try it. And if we see some success and we see there's going to be accelerated success with more resources, I'm going to go to Council and request more resources."
Moore calls it the “broken window” theory: cracking down on blight and community nuisances that invite crime and criminals into a neighborhood, while at the same time, attacking criminal activity itself.