Michael Nutter, who is likely to be the next Philadelphia mayor, is worried about the homicide total that is projected to exceed 400 for a second straight year, says the Philadelphia Inquirer. Nutter wants to hire more police, install more surveillance cameras, concentrate on high-crime areas, focus on repeat offenders, and, build a city that provides more alternatives to a life of crime. Nutter believes that the violence, if not abated, threatens the city’s progress, its image, and its economic prospects.
Unless the situation changes dramatically between now and next year, he would work quickly as mayor to lay the groundwork for declaring crime emergencies in three to five city neighborhoods. In those “targeted enforcement zones,” police would have the power to prohibit outdoor gatherings, limit the movement of vehicles, establish a curfew, and prohibit the possession of all weapons. More officers would be deployed, with orders to stop, question, and frisk anyone they had to reason to believe was carrying a gun. “There is no single thing; there are 15 things,” Nutter said, stressing that a long-run solution must include increased job opportunities for lower-income residents. “As long as we continue to think there’s one thing, we’re not going to get a whole lot done. It is, again, the ultimate in multitasking.”