San Bernardino, Ca., once known as “Murder City,” has become something of a model city, says the Riverside Press-Enterprise. The city struggling to shake its lawless image was recognized Monday at the White House for its progressive crime-fighting program. A countywide effort to reduce street violence also was highlighted at the White House cimeconference, meant to help officials exchange information about successful anti-gang programs and forge closer partnerships with one another and the federal government.
San Bernardino Mayor Pat Morris’s Operation Phoenix has been credited with contributing to a sharp decline in the city’s crime rate. The number of murders fell by 45 percent, Morris said. San Bernardino County District Attorney Mike Ramos and Redlands Police Chief Jim Bueermann, who each has launched crime-reduction campaigns in recent years, also attended. At the end of the conference, the participants met for 45 minutes with Vice President Joe Biden, who echoed the support expressed by Attorney General Eric Holder, Bueermann said. “It’s very clear that this administration is going to focus on crime,” he said.