Washington, D.C.’s new crime-fighting strategy calls for customized actions to address safety needs in each region of the city, reports the Washington Post. Officers in each of the city’s 46 police service areas will meet with residents and elected officials in coming weeks and create initiatives that will be launched in March. At the urging of acting police chief Cathy Lanier, patrol commanders have started programs, including one that has officers adopting specific neighborhood blocks or parks where they will personally keep track of any emerging concerns. “Our overriding goal is to reduce crime and the fear of crime in every neighborhood,” said Lanier, who last week succeeded Charles Ramsey as chief.
Lanier and mayor Adrian Fenty have emphasized increased officer visibility and foot patrols. The city plans to add 100 officers to the 3,800-member department, and Lanier has said patrols will be her priority. She envisions a force that goes beyond reacting to crimes by building and sustaining safe neighborhoods. Lanier told patrol commanders in the seven police districts to have open dialogues with their officers, who in turn are supposed to cull ideas from the community.