Council proposal would give public more Blue C.R.U.S.H. information

The Memphis City Council is planning to take a more active role in dealing with the city's crime problem this summer by giving citizens access to the same crime fighting information that police have.

According to city council member Tom Marshall, when crime happens in Memphis, council members hear about it.  "We get calls throughout the middle of the night and during the day from people who are dissatisfied with the kind of criminal activity that's occurred," Marshall said in an interview Monday.

They get an earful of complaints, often accusing the council of not doing anything to fight the problem.

Now, Marshall is ready to change that perception.

"What the council has agreed to do is serve as a conduit from the police department to neighborhoods," Marshall said.

Marshall's proposal would take crime statistics gathered daily as part of Police Director Larry Godwin's Operation Blue C.R.U.S.H, and put those numbers directly into the hands of citizens.

"(Police) know for instance if drug dealers have been caught in the immediate vicinity, or if houses have been broken into just down the street," Marshall said. "We can tell people when it's time to be on the lookout, when they need to increase their alert, and when to report back to us or directly to the Police Department."

The information would posted on the council's web page, and mailed in bi-weekly flyers.

Marshall will present the plan to the full council next week.  From there, it will be up to individual council members to decide whether they want to participate in this program.  Marshall said everything should be up and running by July 1.

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