APD chief addresses crime - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

APD chief addresses crime

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By Jim Wallace - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – Crime is a problem that's on the minds of a lot of people, and senior citizens are particularly vulnerable. Albany Police Chief John Proctor says he's working on new initiatives to better protect them.

Senior citizens told Albany Police Chief John Proctor that they have serious concerns about crime and gangs in Albany, and many of them said they are afraid.

Knowing there are at least 41 gangs in Albany frightens Evelyn Cauley. "I think this gang issue is really, really bad, and it is scary," she said.

Louise Ware said Albany seniors are frightened by the number of break ins they hear about daily. "We have a lot of fear, because being at home alone. People preying on you."

APD Chief John Proctor spent time with senior citizens today to hear their concerns. "This was extremely important. It was extremely informative. I learned a lot today,"  Proctor said.

Chief Proctor said his department is already looking for ways to target crime against seniors. "Because too often you are the most vulnerable in our community. And you tend to get lost in this shuffle of things, and it is my hope to make sure we concentrate on that."

Proctor urged the senior citizens to join neighborhood watch groups in their communities, and report any concerns or problems. He told the seniors that the gang unit is making progress, and that if they work together with law enforcement they can improve the crime problem.

Both Cauley and Ware said they feel better after hearing the Chief, and hearing him pledge Police will be watching over them. "Yes it did. I wish he could come again," Ware said.

Chief Proctor told the seniors he can't lock everybody up, but he will not be soft on crime in Albany.

Chief Proctor said after meeting with several police chiefs in South Georgia, those chiefs said they are seeing more gang issues as well, many from Albany. The chief thinks that means the Gang Unit in Albany is working, forcing gang members to move their activities to other surrounding towns.

Chief Proctor says the Albany Police Department is 30 officers short right now, but he's working to fill those vacancies.


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