Milwaukee Police Department Unveils 45-Page Plan To Address ‘Unacceptable’ Violent Crime Rates

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Mary Rooke Commentary and Analysis Writer
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The Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) unveiled a new plan Thursday to help the city tackle reportedly rising crime rates.

The MPD’s 2023 Violent Crime Plan details the department’s strategy to mitigate criminal acts in Milwaukee, including homicide, rape, robbery, aggravated assault and human trafficking, according to the department’s 44-page proposal.

The MPD’s focus on violent crime is controlled by the department’s four bureaus, identified as Chief of Staff Functions, Patrol Bureau Functions, Criminal Investigation Bureau Functions and Administration Bureau Functions, according to the plan.

The Patrol Bureau, which controls the city’s seven police districts, is highlighted in the proposal as “the foundation” for the department’s community engagement efforts.

“The Crime Plan functions of Patrol Bureau are both reactive (first response to calls for service); and proactive to address crime in geographic specific areas,” according to the plan. (RELATED: Maryland Democrat Files Bill To Stop Charging Anyone Under 25 With Felony Murder)

“The Patrol Bureau’s proactive approach includes a focus on geographic concentration of crime (i.e., nuisance property solutions), community-based policing (foot and bicycle patrol), crime suppression relying on investigative strategy (i.e., focused enforcement, dedicated patrol missions and community engagement interventions), problem-oriented policing strategy (i.e., call-ins, intervention in retaliatory violence, building strategy to address habitual offenders or repeated victimization),” the report continues.

MPD Violent Crime Plan Spring 2023 by Mary Rooke on Scribd

Milwaukee did see a 15% overall decline in violent crime from 2021 to 2022, according to MPD. Still, crimes such as human trafficking and murder skyrocketed over the last 12 months, the plan data shows.

The MPD dealt with 142% more human trafficking cases in 2022 than in 2021. Homicides in the city were up 11%, with 137 juvenile victims; carjackings were up 7% and arson increased by 4%, according to the report.

There was a 120% rise in the number of non-fatal shootings inside MPD’s district one. Non-fatal shootings outside a designated MPD district increased by 95%, and district 6 had 75% more, the report continued.

The MPD plans to use focused deterrence tactics, such as its “Summer Guardian” program that deployed MPD patrol units in neighborhoods with the most gunshots according to tracking technology. “The majority of the zones had fewer homicide and nonfatal shooting incidents during the month of their deployment than their average number of incidents,” the MPD stated.

“Violence in Milwaukee at any level is unacceptable to MPD, this community, and me personally,” MPD Chief Jeffrey Norman said in a letter in the department’s plan. “As the Chief of Police for the City of Milwaukee, a lifelong Milwaukee resident, and a husband raising children in this community, I am professionally and personally committed to resolving violence in our City.”

Norman warned predicting firearm-related violence in the city is getting harder because “anecdotally … so many incidents are occurring for petty arguments and interpersonal conflict.” He urged Milwaukee residents to “work together” to help end the community violence.

“While the Crime Plan is MPD’s best attempt at a strategy to reduce these violent behaviors, I can assure you MPD’s efforts alone are not enough,” Norman wrote.