‘Operation Unity’ partners Jackson police with federal prosecutors

JPD partners with agencies to create "Operation Unity"

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Jackson Police Department announced a partnership with federal law enforcement.

It’s called Operation Unity. The goal is to get criminals with guns off the streets.

“We’re joined together in unity as one, law enforcement, to saturate the city of Jackson,” Chief James Davis said.

Operation Unity will launch on November 7. The U.S. Attorney’s Office will aid JPD with processing cases but will not provide extra officers. Davis says his officers will develop the cases while federal prosecutors process the cases. This will apply for any violent crimes.

Deputy Chief Deric Hearn says violent crime across the crime is a diverse, dangerous threat that no one agency can tackle alone.

District Attorney Jody Owens says law enforcement is doing their job, but they need help from the community to tackle the amount of crime in the city.

“We are seeing senseless crimes across this city that we have no answer for,” Davis said.

Hinds County Chief Allen White says his department stands with JPD and will be helping with Operation Unity.

Davis says people across the country are living on the edge because of the pandemic and pleaded with the community to “walk away and live another day.” He blames people who are turning violent with interpersonal relationships and pointing guns at friends, family and loved ones.

Davis says people in Jackson can expect to see more officers in troubled areas, and areas where the community tells them need help. He also says across the country, more community policing is needed.

U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst expressed displeasure over JPD’s press conference announcing the operation. He says he reached out to Chief Davis to advise against announcing the operation, but his phone calls were not returned.

Hursts says announcing Operation unity could put officers' lives in danger.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to work closely with JPD and our other partners in order to prosecute violent criminals in Jackson, as we have been doing for the last three years, under Project EJECT," Hurst said in a statement. "But I pray for our law enforcement and their safety over the next two weeks in Jackson, and I hope that future law enforcement operations will be conducted to have more meaningful, long-term effects.”

‘Operation Unity’ partners Jackson police with federal prosecutors

Copyright 2020 WLBT. All rights reserved.