Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

County Police Boost Efforts in Jennings

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

County Police Boost Efforts in Jennings

Article excerpt

JENNINGS * All Nancy Steinmeyer said she needed to do Thursday night was drive through her hometown of 51 years to notice that St. Louis County police have beefed up their patrols in an effort to calm the violence that's been rising in recent months.

More than double the amount of patrol officers started saturating the southern part of the city of about 4,000 Thursday. A shooting earlier this week injured one man as friends and family of the city's eighth homicide victim since December gathered for a vigil, said Lt. Jeff Fuesting, commander of the Jennings detail.

"We want to reassure the citizens of Jennings that the community is safe and crime has been going down in the last two years," Fuesting said. "When they see the added cars, it will give them a sense of relief in knowing there are additional officers patrolling."

St. Louis County police assumed police operations in the city about two years ago after the City Council discovered corruption inside the police department including missing money.

At the time, residents packed city hall with questions about transitioning to the county's police service. County police assured the community that the $2.8 million contract would employ 33 officers while saving the city money and giving the community access to more police services, such as the department's helicopter, canine unit, homicide and special investigations units.

Starting Thursday, officers from those specialized units took to the streets, issuing 49 citations, making 16 misdemeanor arrests, one felony arrest and generating a "number of leads" into open investigations, Fuesting said.

In all, seven officers from the county's tactical unit participated along with one canine officer and four additional Jennings patrol officers, he said.

Six cars failed to yield to officers Thursday night and fled into St. Louis, Fuesting said, adding that the helicopter will be part of the special enforcement when the weather cooperates to pursue fleeing suspects. …

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