Kansas City media politely ignored a statement from embattled KCPD Chief Smith today but the words are important not only because they're backed up by data but also because the perspective from the police department is vital to understanding how law enforcement views the local crime crisis.
The missive features the Chief attempting to calm residents and encourage cooperation. Sadly, this tactic might not meet with success given an intensifying level of cowtown division as the local economy collapses, the pandemic worsens and it seems that civil unrest is ramping up again ahead of election returns.
Here's the word as protesters continue their demands for the top cop's removal . . .
KCPD Chief's Blog: Operation LeGend isn’t over, and KC homicide rate continues to decrease
Money line supported by a few graphs . . .
"Operation LeGend is not over. While we have long had a great working relationship with our federal law enforcement partners, those relationships are being enhanced. For many years, we have had several specialized squads composed of both KCPD and federal agents, and that’s growing. The FBI’s Kansas City Field Office will embed additional personnel in our Violent Crimes Division . . .
Operation LeGend is about enforcement, but we have all heard that police can’t “arrest our way out” of a violent crime issue. That’s why we’re working with faith leaders in the Getting to the Heart of the Matter initiative to address some of the root causes of crime. It’s why we partnered with churches from the Northland to the Southland this past weekend on Faith and Blue events that provided more than 45,000 meals to residents. It’s why we employ social workers and a specialized Crisis Intervention Team Squad and so much more."
If the statement reads like hype, that's because it is . . . And it comes as local tensions amid the upcoming November vote are starting to rise again.
You decide . . .