CANTON, Miss. (WLBT) – A surge in gun violence plagues parts of Canton and the city could possibly surpass last year’s homicide numbers.
“The increase in crime here is really sad for our town. But crime is everywhere and we are trying to do the best we can to curb crime down,” said Canton Police Chief Otha Brown.
“When you come to the city of Canton, I want you to feel safe and that you will be safe,” added Dr. Willam Truly Jr.
Mayor Truly Jr. and Brown did not hold back when discussing the crime problems plaguing Canton and what needs to be done to fix it.
Last year, the city had 10 homicides. So far this year there have been six.
With three months to go before the end of the year, the fear is this could be the deadliest year in the city of Canton. So, the mayor issued a new city ordinance that will now require business owners to install security cameras outside their buildings.
Also, if the business is two thousand square feet or larger, the city wants cameras inside and outside. The city is also working to install cameras at different crime hotspots in the city.
“The police can’t be everywhere. We’re just trying to let the criminals know before you commit an act here in these hotspots where the cameras are going to be at, you may want to think twice,” said Brown.
“It kind of sheds light and it protects you if you are walking out that business at night from abduction or harm,” said Truly.
Here’s what some residents say about those surveillance cameras:
“It will help, it will help,” said Rosie Young.
“I don’t think it’ll be too burdensome, but technology changes so quickly in that field,” said business owner Ed Hutchinson
Brown says his team of officers is also working longer hours to increase visibility on the streets and patrolling troubled neighborhoods.
“We have asked the officers to work 10 hours mostly toward the weekend and some the very beginning of the week. We have been setting roadblocks, saturation patrols, and checking people out. Thursday, we got eight guns and made eight arrests, so that was a great thing for the city and police department.”
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