Omaha police are taking aim at gang members and their guns, reports the Omaha World-Herald. Officials say progress is being made. “We made some significant arrests of folks we know have potential to cause the gun crimes,” said Lt. Kerry Neumann, head of the police gang unit. “Getting the known violent offenders off the street is the key to reducing the homicide rate and the number of gun crimes.”
A multiagency operation April 1 rounded up known gang members with outstanding misdemeanor warrants. Neumann said such operations are a three-pronged approach designed to pick up people with outstanding warrants, get police into neighborhoods, and help put residents at ease. Police Chief Alex Hayes said the beefed-up patrols and other intervention and prevention techniques are tools for disrupting the cycle of violent crime. Solving the larger problems behind the violence will require effort from groups across the community, he said. “It is a long-term problem that will take a long-term solution. Throwing a bunch of officers at a situation won’t solve something that has been a problem since the early ’90s,” the chief said.