Updated: 04/11/2014 7:41 PM
Created: 04/11/2014 11:26 AM WHEC.com
By: Berkeley Brean
At the direction of Mayor Lovely Warren, the Rochester Police Department is starting to change from it's east and west side units to five sections around the city.
Click here to find out what section you live and work in.
Rochester Police Chief Michael Ciminelli and Mayor Warren say the changes are happening because of a palpable disconnect between police officers and people who live and work in the city.
Rochester Police Acting Deputy Chief Kevin Costello said, “The community wants it, leadership in the City of Rochester wants it and the cops on the street want it.” And specific neighborhoods will be assigned to individual cops.
Two weeks ago, a murder took place on Wilkins Street. That’s where Patricia Hendrix owns her home and takes care of her grandchildren. She is exactly who the City is thinking about when it makes this change.
Berkeley Brean: “Do you wish you had a closer relationship with the police officers in your neighborhood?”
Patricia Hendrix: “Yeah, I do. They keep things down. They do what they have to do and I'm glad for that.”
We asked the mayor if this will make the City safer for people like Patricia and thousands of families who live in Monroe County but come to Rochester for all the entertainment options.
Berkeley Brean: “Can you make that promise?”
Mayor Lovely Warren: “No I don't think anyone can make that kind of promise. So I cannot say we will be safer. I hope that we will.”
A little history
About 10 years ago, the RPD went from eight sections across the city down to two -- east and west. The sides were divided by the Genesee River. Since that time, the crime rate reduced in the city and so did the amount of overtime for police officers.
Now, City Hall and the Police Department say the break up of the city into five sections is as a result of analysis of calls for service, neighborhood sizes and natural boundaries. With the exception of the "downtown" section, the other four sections statistically have roughly the same number of city blocks, length of streets and calls for service.
Couple of highlights