Students work to reduce crime in Dutchtown neighborhood -

Students work to reduce crime in Dutchtown neighborhood

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( – With crime up nearly twenty percent in the Dutchtown neighborhood in south St. Louis, a group of local students is cleaning up the area in hopes to bring crime back down.

About 400 students and faculty from St. Mary’s High School spent the day outside cleaning the streets.

“It’s important for us to send a message to the neighborhood and the city of St. Louis that we love this neighborhood,” said Mike England, President of St. Mary’s. “We care about this neighborhood and we want good things for this neighborhood.”

England isn’t afraid of hard work. And neither are his students.

“We want to make an impact in the community and hopefully when they see us doing our stuff, the community will respond,” said Lorenza Clark, a junior at St. Mary’s.

But their efforts are amidst a growing crime rate in their neighborhood. According to the St. Louis city police crime statistics, crime is up in all three neighborhoods close to where the kids go to high school and a nineteen percent spike in Dutchtown. There is a thirty-five percent jump in Carondelet to the southeast and a seventy-eight percent climb in Holly Hills to the southwest.

“If we just sit there and say this is as good as it gets, it’s never going to get any better,” England said. “That’s what you’re stuck with. But if we try to make a difference now, I think we can start that process.”

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