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Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - Rochester Police Chief Jim Franklin held a news conference this afternoon to highlight what he termed the Police Department's "proactive and aggressive response" to violent crimes.

At the same time, Chief Franklin noted the city has only seen a modest increase in those crimes this year. He says the have been 11 shootings in Rochester since the beginning of the year. A year ago, the total at the beginning of July was 10.

photo by Andy Brownell
photo by Andy Brownell

He discussed efforts to create a "violence disruption task force" internally to enhance the Police Department's response to shootings and other violent crimes. Franklin says, despite the staffing challenges experienced by the department, the new approach has worked very well and has resulted in eight arrests and the confiscation of seven guns over the past few weeks. He says a total of 23 guns have been seized this year.

Chief Franklin also used the event to push more community involvement. He says the department takes a lot of pride in being a “relationly policing” police department." He urged members of the public to report suspicious activity or circumstances, and to cooperate with officers, promising that those who commit violent acts "are our priority."

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