Lynchburg Police detail how they've turned things around after series of shootings

Younger Park (Photo: WSET)

LYNCHBURG, Va. (WSET) - Lynchburg police attribute community involvement in helping turn things around following a series of shootings in the Fairview Heights neighborhood. In April, two separate back-to-back shootings put residents on edge; one took place at Younger Park the other on Maryland Avenue.

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But in a meeting Monday night, LPD detailed what they've been doing to help put an end to it all.

In the months after two separate shootings put community members on edge in the Fairview neighborhood, the Lynchburg Police Department has put a series of plans into action to ensure residents feel safe.

One part: an increase in patrols.

Shortly after the incidents, LPD's community action team went door-to-door taking notes of the residents' concerns.

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But the effort was a two way street. Through LPD's Concerned Reliable Citizens program, or CRC, residents have been a second set of eyes and ears for officers.

"We've only got 12 officers covering 50 square miles," said Lynchburg Commonwealth's Attorney, Mike Doucette who helped create the program 12 years ago. "It allows people to provide information in a confidential fashion as to what is going on in their neighborhood."

At the meeting to update the community on their progress, LPD announced 25 people have graduated from CRC, another 25 are wait-listed.

"Everybody knows, and everybody is involved in what is going on. It helps the police it helps the public," said Doucette.

As part of the plan, Lynchburg Public Works tidied up Younger Park. Some of the changes included enhancing the lighting and removing graffiti.

And, Doucette said they are currently working on setting up another CRC training for those on the wait list.

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