COLUMBUS, Ohio — Columbus police are releasing the results of “Operation Unity,” which is the effort to work with neighbors and block watch groups to crack down on crime in hot spots in the city.
Dangerous drugs and guns have been intercepted at a time when police are facing a mounting number of shootings.
In a 24-hour period one week ago, police focused efforts in the Linden, King-Lincoln Bronzeville, Mt. Vernon, Eastgate, and Milo-Grogan neighborhoods. It’s an area called Zone 6.
- 28 felony arrests
- 7 stolen vehicles recovered
- 11 illegal guns recovered
- 164 grams of cocaine seized
- 153 grams of fentanyl seized
- 23 grams of heroin seized
Deputy Chief Elric Alli explained where the focus turns next.
“We're focusing these resources all over the city. And we have these operations continuously so you never know when the next operation unity is coming to a neighborhood near you,” he said.
Meanwhile, recruitment efforts for police remain underway.
“Being a police officer is the hardest job in America. You never know what you're going to get into. But each of us goes through rigorous training and we all take this job because it's a calling for us to want to help the community. So really we focus on the mission to make sure the public gets the support and safety they deserve,” Deputy Chief Alli said.
However, it's been a violent week for Columbus police officers.
On Wednesday, an officer was shot while responding to an armed robbery at a south Columbus shopping center.
We asked Mayor Andrew Ginther: “what can you tell people who are maybe afraid to take the bus, afraid to go to certain shopping centers now because they are afraid that now violence could happen anywhere in our city?”
Mayor Ginther responded, “we have to remain vigilant.”
He went on to say, “we've got to keep focused on this comprehensive effort. Prevention, intervention, and enforcement.”
“Everyone in our city deserves to live in a safe and crime free community,” Deputy Chief Alli added.
Mayor Ginther said the city is committed to recruitment and training efforts for Columbus police officers.
Operation Unity also resulted in the recovery of one machine gun converter.