Peoria police pursuing federal grant for Don’t Shoot effort

Mar 27, 2013

  The Peoria Police Department is applying for a federal grant as part of the community's anti-violence initiative. The Don’t Shoot program is based on the book by David Kennedy and addresses ways law enforcement and the community can reduce violent crime. Police Chief Steve Settingsgaard says the Department of Justice grant request is for about $700,000 over three years. He says it would pay for some of Kennedy’s staff at John Jay College to help Peoria officials with the program:

 “Make sure we’re on track, make sure we’re following the strategy correctly.  As you know, none of us have ever done this before.  John Jay does that with communities that launch a similar program.  They go out and spend two or three years with you.  Keep things moving and keep things on track,” Settingsgaard says.

 Settingsgaard says the grant would help local law enforcement collect and analyze data. Late last year law enforcement officials cracked down on members of Peoria's Bomb Squad Gang with significant charges for some and warnings for others.  But Settingsgaard says the group has resurfaced and continues to commit crimes with firearms.  He says officials are preparing for a second call-in targeting the Bomb Squad and another area-gangs.