Detroit police promise federal charges for certain crimes committed in city's most violent areas
DETROIT (FOX 2) - In the latest effort to combat violence in Detroit, authorities say they will issue federal charges for certain crimes committed in the 8th and 9th precincts, some of the most violent areas of the city.
Related: Detroit rolls out new crime prevention plan to reduce gun violence
"We have way too many families in northwest and northeast Detroit, the 8th and 9th precincts, that aren't safe in their neighborhoods, who too often go to sleep at night to the sound of gunshots," Mayor Mike Duggan said.
Detroit police and federal authorities said carjackings, armed robberies of businesses, and certain gun crimes in these areas will be prosecuted in federal court, meaning that the suspects could face longer sentences.
"If you are a felon in possession in the federal system, you could potentially get 25 years," said U.S. Attorney Dawn Ison.
It's a move authorities hope will curb the violence that is spiking in the northwest and northeast corners of the city.
"Since Jan. 1 our records show that there have been 865 cases of serious assault – this is citywide – homicide, carjackings, and armed robberies, and these are only the cases presented to us," Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said.
Last year, the U.S. Attorney’s Office tried a similar blitz that focused on federal charges for gun crimes, but this year’s movement dubbed "One Detroit" adds commercial armed robberies to the list after some violent recent incidents.
"We just got a guilty verdict on a guy who was going to a number of Walgreens, sneaking through the coolers, and holding guns on people," Ison said.
As part of this effort, authorities are also cracking down on people already involved with the criminal justice system.
"We already sent out 200 letters to people on probation, state probation, state parole, and federal supervised release, and we have warned them about what we are doing," Ison said.