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NEWS-SENTINEL EDITORIAL: A step in the right direction

Another state agency is responding favorably to a need in Fort Wayne that we brought up in a June 20 editorial.

Recent violent incidents on public streets and in public places flew in the face of Mayor Henry’s April news conference in which he praised a significant decrease in crime in the first quarter of 2019.

Three men were arrested following a car chase June 14 where gunfire was exchanged near the intersection of Lima Road and Fernhill Avenue, a stolen car crashed near the Fort Wayne Children’s Zoo and the car’s occupants hopped a fence and ran into the zoo, which was put on lockdown.

Then, early Sunday evening, the 16th, a 20-year-old man was shot and killed in the parking lot of the Walmart at Coldwater Crossing Shopping Center, when several people were in the store and parking lot.

Our point in the editorial was that those shootings show there is much more work to be done in terms of community safety. Which is why it was timely and encouraging to learn that Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill was in town Wednesday for the first in a series of meetings around the state with leaders of law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Hill said the statewide tour is aimed at finding solutions to concerns about crime. According to materials reportedly handed out to those attending the Fort Wayne forum, including Fort Wayne Police Chief Steve Reed, the meetings set for the 13 other cities participating will focus on “bringing together stakeholders in the community and having a facilitated discussion on what is working and identify some of the barriers preventing programming success.”

Hill says the success of the forums will depend on the input from those who attend the meetings and what kinds of ideas and suggestions emerge.

News-Sentinel.com hopes Hill’s meeting here results in further considerations of what needs to be done to make progress in crime prevention something that helps local citizens be safe within their city.

As we said in our June 20 editorial, whatever progress has been made, gang violence, drugs and guns remain issues that plague Fort Wayne. And we said we hoped the topic may be brought to life in the mayoral election campaign during the next year.

The forum held here by the office of the Attorney General of Indiana was timely indeed.

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