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Staying Ahead of Organized Crime and Drugs

Published on July 7, 2022

Criminal activity in Huntsville ranks well below other cities in the U.S. and the officers in the Huntsville Police Department want to keep it that way. Strategically looking for patterns in criminal behavior and staying ahead of drug activity is a police priority, particularly when dealing with organized crime.

“If you are not solving crimes, it creates a place where criminals can get away with what they are doing, and that breeds more crime. If we keep clearance rates high, we keep crime rates lower,” said Deputy Chief DeWayne McCarver.

At the upcoming Huntsville Police Citizens Advisory Council (HPCAC) meeting on July 12, police will be addressing how they tackle organized crime and drugs and how the community can help. HPCAC Chair Jonathan Rossow believes the public wants to better understand their role and the police process in fighting criminal activity.

“This a great opportunity to learn about an important topic in our community,” said Rossow. “Further, our meeting format fosters an environment for constructive dialogue and building positive relationships directly with the HPD officers that serve us. If you’re interested in public safety and how to make it even better, this is the venue for you.”

Sgt. Karl Kissich, Supervisor for the Anti-Crime Team, will lead the conversation at the HPCAC meeting. He’s proud of the work his department is doing and emphasizes the importance of working as a trusted community partner in keeping Huntsville safe.

“The Anti-Crime Team utilizes many tools to achieve the mission from intelligence to street enforcement,” said Kissich. “The key to it all, though, is our multiple partnerships with community residents, leaders and organizations that help us identify where and how best to focus our efforts.”

Kissich points to the nearly 85% clearance rate in drug offenses as proof of HPD’s commitment to keeping organized drug dealers at bay.

“We’re not trying to arrest the person who is struggling with addiction,” said Kissich. “We’re strategically after the organizers, the groups bringing drugs into our city and selling them.”

The HPCAC meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 12, from 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in the Oakwood University Community Health Action Center, 1863 Sparkman Drive 35816. Following a presentation by police, HPCAC members and officers will break into round table discussions with the public. For more information, visit the HPCAC webpage.