Fall River gang task force leads to 38 arrests in 6 weeks
By Alana Cerrone
FALL RIVER, Mass. (WLNE) – The Fall River Crime and Gang Impact Task Force has been busy in its first 6 weeks – making 38 arrests and seizing several illegal guns.
The task force was formed after two back-to-back gang-related shootings in June on Pine Street. And it was successful – 3 suspects were arrested.
But the task force also allows police to be proactive, gathering intelligence and identifying key players before it’s too late – before violence happens.
Just last week they seized an illegal gun and arrested three known gang members – one a juvenile.
But a local youth outreach program, the Shannon Community Safety Initiative, says this isn’t a problem the city can just arrest its way out of. They’re looking at a multi-pronged approach that includes police action but also connecting youth with positive role models.
They say getting kids to buy in to their message is their biggest challenge. In fact, schools in Fall River start teaching gang prevention at the elementary level, but it only gets more difficult once kids enter high school.