Working with the North Miami Police Department and the North Miami Beach Police Department in early 2023, the Intracoastal District developed a plan to reduce gun violence in all three jurisdictions. The strategy relies on sharing information between all three agencies, and input from officers and supervisors who are familiar with the trouble spots, and the troublemakers.
At the start of the summer, the plan went into effect. A group of approximately 12 officers from all three agencies saturated the trouble spots at least twice a week, particularly during overnight hours. Through mid-August, they made over 35 felony arrests, confiscated over 20 firearms, and almost 500 rounds of ammunition.
“A lot of our criminal elements intersect between the three of us, so beginning in the summer, we worked closely together, doing proactive details in their jurisdictions and in our jurisdiction,” said Intracoastal District Major Jean Volcy. When he was assigned to the district in January 2023, reducing gun violence was his top priority. He enlisted officers from the district’s Crime Suppression Team and General Investigations Unit to be part of the joint initiative. “It has resulted in some pretty good arrests and has taken a lot of guns off the streets,” said Major Volcy.
In August, officers seized five handguns that had devices known as “switches” on them that converted the weapons to automatic. According to Major Volcy, “To be able to take those five handguns off the streets, from a small area, is significant, our efforts have been fruitful. In comparison to the first four months of 2023, the summer has experienced a significant decline in gun violence.” Shared intelligence is key in solving cases and diminishing crime, as the perpetrators do not stay within the boundaries of any given municipality. “We were getting a lot of shootings related to Intracoastal’s jurisdiction and vice versa,” said North Miami Beach Police Captain Lino Diaz. “We started working together, sharing intelligence, and quickly determined that there was information that the county needed, and that we needed to connect the dots,” he said.
The initiative relies on geographic areas defined informally as “boxes” where the officers concentrate their efforts, based on intelligence, typically a PowerPoint analysis that identifies a specific area as having a high probability of experiencing gun violence. Captain Diaz said that recently, the group’s investigation revealed there would be a high likelihood that gun violence would erupt between 1-3 a.m. in a specific area. Officers were dispatched to that box, and while they were there, at 1:30 a.m., the Sound Thinking (previously known as ShotSpotter) acoustic gunshot detection system, relayed to the officers information on a shooting about a half mile from their location.
Officers rushed to the location and observed a white Hyundai Genesis leaving the area. The officers followed the vehicle to a gas station, and when they searched the car, found shell casings inside the car that matched those left at the scene. “Every time we work together, we get the best results,” Captain Diaz said.
Originally published at https://www.miamidade.gov/global/news-item.page?Mduid_news=news1697769008416871