Perpetually unnamed yet so-called “experts” are coming back to the idea that the Giuliani/Bloomberg era of “stop and frisk” policing may actually work to prevent crime.
While cities like Chicago, New York and Los Angeles are holding fast to their failed policies, officials in the city of Brotherly Love are at least beginning to acknowledge that a decrease in the presence of police actually leads to increased crime. Specifically, a distinct correlation exists between routine traffic stops and the confiscation of illegally transported firearms.
“In Philadelphia at one point… 80% of the illegal guns they took off the street were the result of car stops,” Former Philadelphia Deputy Commissioner Joseph Sullivan told Fox News. “Legal vehicle investigations are a critical part of any gun violence strategy.”
After the city council of Philadelphia passed legislation aimed at reducing the number of traffic stops for minor violations such as expired vehicle registrations, missing tail lamps or driving with an expired state inspection sticker, greater offenses that would otherwise be discovered have slipped through the cracks.
Sullivan told Fox News that such lackadaisical policies have stymied the effect law enforcement can have on preventing more serious crimes.
“In a city that has experienced a record number of homicides… in a city that’s on pace to do that again this year… I really think that is ill-advised,” Sullivan said.
Philadelphia City Council Member Isaiah Thomas was among those calling for “reforms” in that city, arguing the new rules would somehow address issues that have been “plaguing black communities.”
“Representatives from the Defender Association of Philadelphia, the Mayor’s Office, the Philadelphia Police Department and residents across the city have joined these conversations and been valued partners in creating this historic legislation, being replicated in municipalities across the country,” a spokesperson for the council said.
Sullivan pointed to the elephant in the room.
“Certainly the pullback of the police as a result of first COVID, then George Floyd, then to the defund the police movement and the actions of far progressive prosecutors has definitely contributed to the increase in violence that we see on the streets of our major cities right now,” he said.
Retired NYPD Detective Sergeant and current professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Joseph Giacalone, told the outlet that major cities like NYC, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles are reeling from the effects of decreased police presence and an unwillingness among officers to perform their duties when they know their respective mayors show deference to criminals rather than to law and order.
“If the bad guys are driving with these guns into places like New York City, Chicago, and Philadelphia, if there’s no fear of getting stopped, then you take more guns,” he said, adding that the lack of traffic stops has emboldened criminals, as the chances of them getting pulled over are “zero.”
“Not only are these good opportunities for officers to interact with the public, these are also very important law enforcement and investigative tools,” he said. “And what starts as what may be a minor offense, often leads to the discovery of much more serious crimes and the enforcement of laws dealing with much more serious crimes.”
“We want to make sure that we’re policing in a constitutionally correct way, but we do need to return to proactive policing,” Sullivan explained. “We can’t continue on a path where we ignore all minor crimes because when you do that it just creates an atmosphere of chaos and disorder that does lead to more serious offenses.”
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