JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - This week the number of homicides in Jackson increased to 109. There have been more murders in Jackson in 2020 than any year in history.
Mississippi, led by Jackson, now ranks as the deadliest state in the nation per capita.
A safe community is one of the most important factors in choosing a place to live. In fact, we are dealing with this as we recruit new employees to WLBT. Over the past year every person we were recruiting to join our team mentions their concern about crime in Jackson.
And nearly every person who ultimately agreed to join our team has chosen to live outside the capital city.
This week law enforcement leaders gathered in a show of solidarity to team up and address crime in Jackson. They are calling the effort, Operation Unity. The goal is to get criminals with guns off the streets.
It is good to see so many law enforcement groups working together to help Jackson get a handle on its crime epidemic. However, there is controversy on whether this should have been announced publicly, as it alerts criminals and could put officers at greater risk.
Hopefully, that will not happen and hopefully the operation will be very successful. We do, however, know one thing; something must change because what the city is doing now is not working.
Consider This: What if the Sheriff was also the Chief of Police… the Cheriff?
Sheriff Vance, the former Jackson Chief, knows the city well, has respect throughout the communities of Jackson and within the law enforcement community. Situations like this call for bold decisions and that would certainly be a bold move.
And even if a combo Cheriff position is ultimately not the answer, it may be time to look at new leadership to help make Jackson safer. In a crisis like this, the mayor and council need to seriously consider that option. It really is a matter of life and death.