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Plan to restructure Detroit Police Department announced

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(Credit: WJBK|myFOXDetroit.com) Detroit Mayor Dave Bing (Credit: WJBK|myFOXDetroit.com) Detroit Mayor Dave Bing

By Alexis Wiley
Fox 2 News


DETROIT (WJBK) -- Detroit's chief of police is shifting resources.  Wednesday, Interim Chief Chester Logan and Mayor Dave Bing unveiled a new plan to fight crime in the city.

The goal is to get as many of the department's officers out of the precincts and on the streets either patrolling neighborhoods or investigating crimes.

"A lot of the printed media is you can't walk down the street in the city of Detroit.  Nothing could be farther from the truth," says Bing.

Unless you're Cassandra Taylor.

"I stay close to home.  I don't venture out very much because of all the carjackings.  It doesn't happen just at night anymore.  It's all during the day, early morning, afternoons, it doesn't matter."

She lives in a neighborhood on Detroit's west side near Seven Mile where gangs are taking a toll and crime is a reality.

"A lot of B&Es and I've been hearing about a lot of murders going on over here, like unsolved murders," says another resident.

DPD is eliminating specialized units like Gang Squad and TAC Mobile and putting them back on patrol.  Logan says that will mean about 100 or more officers back on the streets.

"We want to make sure that every person who could be put on patrol is in patrol," he explains.

The department is also beefing up its homicide division, doubling the number of detectives without making any new hires.

Taylor says she's glad there will be more officers on patrol, but the idea of losing Gang Squad just as gangs in her neighborhood are gaining strength has her worried.

"They know how to decipher what all this graffiti means.  I guess that's how the gangs tag their territory, and they know how to decipher who is where and whatever," she says.  "I definitely would not like to see them disbanded."

"The idea is and the mindset is now with Gang Squad being decentralized, put back to the commands, the commanders know exactly what the issues are in their respective districts and precincts," says Commander Frankie Lewis.

The first phase of this plan will take effect at the beginning of March.

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