Drop In City Gun Crimes Is Good News

Confirmed shootings decreased by 25% in Jamestown in 2023 – good news for city residents who saw far too many shootings in 2022.

In fact, most gun crimes have decreased from two years ago, according to the 2023 Public Safety Report given to City Council members recently. In addition to the decrease in confirmed shootings, there were only 81 calls for gunshot complaints, the fewest since 2018 when there were 84. Compare that to 2022, when gunshot complaints spiked to 155 following 128 gunshot complaints in 2021, 124 in 2020 and 125 in 2019.

But the news from the city’s 2023 Public Safety Report isn’t all rosy. Jamestown police seized 76 firearms in 2023, just four fewer than the 80 guns collected in 2022. From 2018 to 2022, police seized about 58 guns a year. That means the city is still a veritable playground for illegally owned guns – and that means Jamestown isn’t out of the woods yet when it comes to gun crimes. As long as there are such a high number of illegal guns being seized there is a chance that those guns will be used in violence on our streets.

Two decisions – one by the state and one made locally – could help decrease those numbers. New York state boosted the city’s Gun Involved Violence Elimination grant to $260,000, nearly triple the amount received in past years. The increased money will help the city’s efforts to slow down the pace of gun violence.

The decision in June to name Chris Draudt and Brian Park as the Jamestown Police Department’s violence interdiction officers, meanwhile, resulted in 100 felony arrests and 200 misdemeanor arrests, as well as the seizure of 30 weapons including firearms; 230 grams of methamphetamine; and 130 grams of fentanyl. A full year of such work could make a bigger dent in the number of illegal guns in the city – and that would hopefully lead to further decreases in the number of shootings and gunshot complaints as well.


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