Multi-agency effort to address record crime announced

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — The rising tide of violence in Rochester is now bringing major reinforcements from Monroe County and millions of dollars to pay for them.

Thursday the City of Rochester and Monroe County rolled out a new violence response initiative and it’s a big change for the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Sheriff Todd Baxter said this is the first time in some 30 years that his office will be enlarged and end up with "more" deputies—11 of them.

City and county leaders are celebrating what they call a "multi-year effort" to fight the current escalation of violence and homicides.

The plan is for the county to spend another $8.5 million to add new deputies. If the legislature approves, that would go towards helping the Rochester Police Department and federal firearms investigators look into violent felonies and effectively double the size of the Sheriff’s Office SWAT team.

The plan also includes follow-up with families where a member has been involved in gun crime, and with convicts in the Monroe County Jail to try and head off future violent crime and it’ll involve simply increasing that law enforcement presence on the streets.

"Just imagine, you being in that neighborhood, fearful to sit on your own front porch," Baxter said. "But now, you see a car going down a few more times a day, just gives you that sense of security. And obviously, we are a lot closer should a shots fired call come in to back up the RPD."

"It takes a village to raise a child," said Rochester Mayor Malik Evans. "It takes a community to help lift Rochester. And that entire community consists of Monroe County."

"It doesn’t matter where you live in this county," said Monroe County Executive Adam Bello. "The violence we are facing impacts all of us. This scourge of crime and all of this calls for a community-wide response."

With the warmer weather bringing them back out on the streets the plan also provides more help for the city, as well as towns and villages around the county to deal with all those illegal ATVs and dirt bikes.

The full press conference is in the video in the player below (mobile users, click here):

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