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City Gun Crimes Dropped Slightly In 2023

Gun-related crimes that include confirmed shootings dropped in the city of Jamestown last year.

For all of 2023, the Jamestown Police Department recorded 66 cases in which there was a report of a firearm involved. That’s a drop of 25% from 2022, a year noted for a spate of shootings that injured eight people and resulted in two deaths.

Firearm-related data was released recently as part of the city’s 2023 Public Safety Report.

Regarding guns, the city documented:

— 15 confirmed shootings in 2023, down from the 24 reported in 2022. As a result of those shootings last year, five people were injured and one person died.

There were 19 confirmed shootings in 2021, which resulted in two deaths. In 2020, there were 14 confirmed shootings that injured four people.

In 2016, another particularly violent year, seven people were injured in shootings that resulted in the deaths of three people.

— 81 calls for service due to a gunshot complaint, the fewest since at least 2018 when there were 84. A complaint only means the department received word of possible shots fired and not necessarily that a shooting had taken place.

Gunshot complaints spiked in 2022, with 155 in total. There were 125 complaints in 2019, in addition to 124 in 2020, and 128 in 2021.

— 76 firearms that were seized in 2023, just four fewer than the 80 guns collected in 2022. From 2018 to 2022, police seized about 58 guns a year.

The city’s most noted shooting incident last year occurred May 11 with the killing of Kala May Hodgkin inside her William Street home. No charges have been announced in the homicide case, though a suspect has been identified and remains jailed in Pennsylvania.

In June of last year, the police department named Chris Draudt and Brian Park as its violence interdiction officers.

“The positions help fight violent crime and take a proactive approach to removing illegally possessed firearms and narcotics off the street,” Chief Timothy Jackson wrote in the annual report.

“This year saw a large increase in arrests due in part through officer initiated enforcement efforts.”

Jackson said Draudt and Park accounted for 100 felony and 200 misdemeanor arrests, as well as the seizure of 30 weapons including firearms; 230 grams of methamphetamine; and 130 grams of fentanyl.

Crime fighting efforts have been boosted with the help of a $260,000 grant due to Jamestown’s participation in the state’s Gun Involved Violence Elimination initiative. The allocation was nearly triple the amount received in past years.

“This money will be used to increase proactive policing, community/youth engagement and conduct additional domestic violence follow-ups and home visits through June of 2024,” Jackson said.

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