LORAIN, Ohio — The Lorain Police Department launched a new unit called the Patrol Impact Team that targets some of the city’s most violent areas.
“It’s dedicated to interdiction of guns and drugs and gang activity,” said Lt. Tim Thompson, Commander Patrol Impact Team.
“The majority of what we do is interdiction of violent crimes. So, we go out there and do a lot of street-level enforcement, we try to intercede in street-level drugs and street-level guns,” said Sgt. Eric Rivera.
The 11-person unit started in January and so far, has seized more than 40 illegal guns, confiscated drugs and money.
“If we take a gun off the street it’s gone. It’s in our custody, it can never be used again. That’s one less gun on the street to harm a citizen or us,” said Thompson.
Data from the department’s crime analyst is used to determine where to deploy the team. The city’s most violent areas are targeted.
“The goal of this unit was to target gun violence specifically and try to remove some of the guns from the streets of Lorain and they’ve been very successful,” said Lt Jake Morris, Lorain Police Department.
“By us being in these specific areas, we’re the deterrent factor for them. They know if they commit a crime, we’re there, we’re not going to run away we are going to step in and do something about it,” said Rivera.
In addition to confiscating illegal weapons, drugs, and cash the officers in the unit have written 562 citations and made 92 felony arrests according to department records.
Police said the law-abiding citizens in the neighborhoods they are targeting are happy to see them in the area.
“They’ll stop you and let you know we appreciate what you’re doing,” said Thompson.
Crime typically spikes during the summer months. Lorain police said given the success of the unit more officers could be added to combat the summer spike in crime.
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