Smaller Police Force Handles Series of Crime

By: Rachel Thomas Email
By: Rachel Thomas Email

Over one night, police sirens rang through the streets of Lansing.

"We had a busy night here at the Lansing Police Department. We had numerous calls, many of them serious calls," said Sgt. Joe Brown of the Lansing Police Department. " We received fight calls, burglary calls, shots fired calls, and stabbing calls."

It began when shots were fired in downtown Lansing where a man stole a tip jar from New York Burrito and fled on foot. Then, police made a traffic stop where several illegal guns were confiscated.

"With last night seisure of the guns, we have recovered 7 illegal guns within the last 2 days," said Sgt. Brown.

Shortly after, two burglaries of medical marijuana dispensaries were reported on Martin Luther King Blvd. The crime didn't stop there. On the north side of town, two people were stabbed after a house party ended just before 5 am.

"One of the two victims was stabbed in the neck and the other was stabbed in the arm," said Sgt. Brown.

More than 30 Lansing police officers were laid-off a month ago, and councilman Eric Hewitt says police are being stretched too thin. But the Lansing mayor says the force is doing more with less.

"Even after the cuts---and we've had tough cuts to make---I still feel good about the city's ability to respond to crime in a timely way. Our response time is not down," said Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero.

The mayor says some programs like Neighborhood Watch were dropped due to budget cuts.

"We can't put a policeman on every corner, we all want that. What we can do is work together.

He hopes the community will step up to help combat crime.


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