Chattanooga Police Chief addresses city council members after violent Labor Day
By WRCB Staff
File photo from previous council visit by Chief Fletcher.
CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -
Two people were shot and killed on Labor Day, bringing the city up to 25 homicides in 2016. Chattanooga is now up 5 homicides from this time last year, but Chief Fletcher said the murder stats don't tell the whole story.
"The violence from Labor Day is frustrating to all of us, especially those of us who hold ourselves responsible for protecting our community," Fletcher said while addressing Chattanooga City Council on Tuesday night.
"It's important to know that violence you hear about on the news and in the paper is not the entire story," he said.
Fletcher noted progress in reducing overall crime in the city since last year. Violent crimes are down 13% from last year, he said. Aggravated assaults have decreased by 20%. Property crimes; down 11%. Burglaries were reduced by 17%.
"A lot of times in the community, you're being judged on the number of murders that we have. But there's some oversight on what brought those things about," Councilman Yusuf Hakeem told Fletcher.
Hakeem said he believes in CPD's progress, but points out real change isn't quick.
"We have to look at what has happened over a period of time, knowing that it's going to take a period of time to unravel all of this," said Hakeem, who commended the department for changes in policing strategies.
Despite recent violence, he said new programs, like those supporting victims, are movement in the right direction.
"Trust is being built between the community and the police department," Hakeem said.
Fletcher said, right now, officers' top priority is tracking down the suspect of the double homicide, Stephen Mobley. The TBI is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.
Chief Fred Fletcher addressed Chattanooga City Council Tuesday night, after a violent Labor Day weekend.
Monday's double homicide marked the city's 24th and 25th murders in 2016.
"It's important to know that violence you hear about on the news and in the paper is not the entire story," Chief Fletcher said to city council members.
Fletcher noted progress in reducing overall crime in the city.
He said violent crimes are down 13% from last year, along with aggravated assaults decreasing by 20%, property crimes by 11% and burglaries down 17%.
Hear more about what Chief Fletcher had to say at tonight's council meeting on Eyewitness News at 11.