Alderman frustrated by increase in violent crime, response from - KMOV.com

Alderman frustrated by increase in violent crime, response from city hall

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NORTH ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) -

St. Louis Alderman Antonio French said he is upset by the increase in murders in the city and how city hall is responding to the problem.

French said the city's main strategy, hot spot policing, is not doing anything to solve the problem. Instead, French said it is simply shifting the crime to other areas. So far, there have been 72 murders in 2015 and the murder rate is expected to pass 2014 numbers.

“The hot spot policing approach has become a whack-a-mole approach. What we want to see is a comprehensive long tern plan for those neighborhoods that have seen a history of violence through the years,” French said.

French also said 2,000 people may be shot in the city by the end of 2015.

French said his solution differs from St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay, who wants to hire more police. The alderman told News 4 investment is needed in neighborhoods that have been forgotten. French said an example is a stretch of north Florissant where he is working to open North Campus, a summer academy and after school center. The campus is on a block full of abandoned buildings.

“The violence we see happens in those areas that have the highest level of disenfranchisement, the highest level of disinvestment, the highest level of vacancy, the highest level of concentrated poverty. The violence we see is really a symptom of the situations we allow to exist in our neighborhoods,” French said.

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