State Police to Patrol Newark As Part of 45-Day Crime Reduction Plan

Newark mayor Ras Baraka announced that state troopers will patrol the streets of New Jersey's largest city as part of a plan to curb violence after 14 people were killed in homicides to start the year.

Baraka announced the new partnership as part of a 45-day plan to fight crime in the city.

Under the nine-point plan, Newark's' three public safety divisions -- the police, fire department and office of emergency management -- will also be reorganized into one department.

City officials say that restructuring the departments would enable supervisors and desk officers would be re-assigned to street duty. 

Other internal tenants of the plan include better intelligence-gathering tactics on gangs and drugs, targeting high-crime areas in the city, reducing police and fire response times, reorganizing the police department's internal affairs unit. 

Some of the focus would be on better informing the community of public safety efforts in Newark, Baraka said.

He said plans are in place to hold open crime statistics meetings, conduct citizen surveys on police performance and that the city will hold a public safety academy so residents can learn the basics of the city's public safety operations.

The announcement comes at a time when violence is apparently spiking in the city. Through Tuesday, 14 people had been killed in homicides, which would have been good for roughly 13 percent of the 104 homicides in 2015.

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