FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. (FOX 5 DC) - Spring is here and so is a program to combat gangs in Northern Virginia. The Fairfax County Police are pushing forward with its springtime gang initiative.
The initiative was so successful in its first year, police decided to bring it back for round two but is it enough to tackle the gang problem that's been described as fluctuating in the county?
Police say the goal of their spring gang initiative is to get detectives in the community, identify gang activity and engage with residents most impacted. In turn, their hope is that residents will report gang activity to police.
"We have gang associations in the county. Obviously, the most talked about is probably MS-13. They're clearly a concern for us but there are a number of other gangs in and around the county that we come into contact with... we deal with all of them," said FCPD Captain Lance Chaivle. "One of the things we do that's unique about this initiative is we reach out to all the district stations without Fairfax County... from there, we pull their gang liaison officers and some of their bike team officers to meet, work with our gang unit for a period of 60 days."
Even so, some residents are coming up with their own ideas.
"I know where I live we're thinking about offering one of our units up for the police to live in so that they're on the property all the time," one resident told FOX 5.
In the pilot gang initiative program, police were able to double the number of gang members identified which led to information, intelligence and solved crimes.