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New position created to reduce violent crimes in Springfield

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Community leaders in Springfield, Ohio have committed to reducing gun and group violence among teens and young adults.

According to FBI statistics, reported violent crimes in Springfield have risen from below 400 in 2020 to nearly 650 in 2021. Additionally, nearly half of the violent crimes in 2021 reported the use of a gun.

Mike Calabrese, the Executive Director of Opportunities for Individual Change of Clark County, or the OIC, stated that the new Violence Prevention Coordinator will work with the community to create and enhance community programs or services to reduce gun violence.

“They will instead lead the charge for the recommended treatment for local gun violence in terms of how do we stop this, who are the partners, how do we get engaged, and how do we keep people engaged too,” Calabrese said.

Funding for this new position with the OIC comes from the US Department of Justice and local donors.

Calabrese said the city asked for close to $2 million from the DOJ to help in its effort to reduce crime rates.