Boston Police To Step Up Park Presence, Continue Targeted Sweeps

By Jess Bidgood

July 8, 2011

BOSTON — Police Commissioner Ed Davis says the Boston Police will increase uniformed presence in parks and playgrounds and continue a series of round-ups and undercover operations in the wake of a jump in gun violence in the city.

Over the July Fourth weekend, shootings and stabbings throughout the city left four people dead and 15 others wounded.

In a press appearance on Friday, Davis said much of the recent violence has been gang-related, with the worst violence in Dorchester’s Bowdoin Street corridor, which has seen five homicides since April.

Davis defended the department’s ongoing law enforcement and police operations. He said it would continue its targeting of “known community predators,” citing a sweep on Thursday that saw 28 individuals arrested.

“We’re very much aware of the ongoing drama that’s occurring, and we’re looking to pull a pin out of it in any place that we can,” Davis said. “It’s not just the shooter that has to worry, it’s the whole gang around him.”

Davis added that ongoing undercover operations “will have an impact in weeks to come.”

Davis also said the BPD would continue an increase in its uniformed presence in parks and other public spaces. A four-year-old was shot by a stray bullet during a shooting in Harambe Park at the end of June. He said the force is working toward a goal of having over 200,000 walking beats, which is twice the number of last year.

Davis said a similar crackdown on violence in Mattapan earlier this year helped reduce gun violence there.

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