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DeKalb police: Crime down 42 percent since surge

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DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. -

DeKalb County's police chief says his department is taking action against a recent string of crime in the area. Chief Cedric Alexander says the department is seeing results from a recent surge of police activity.

The increase in officer visibility came after a crime meeting in Grant Park earlier this month. Residents frustrated with a recent increase in violence and burglaries expressed how vulnerable they feel and how fed up they are.
 
Since then, up to 25 extra DeKalb officers have been patrolling the unincorporated areas of the county, including Gresham Park, Eastland Heights, Piney Grove and Park View.

"We've been making ourselves much more present," Alexander said.

In eight days, DeKalb police say the teams have made 75 arrests and written 105 citations. In all, crime in the area had been reduced by 42 percent.

Many of those arrested were juveniles.

"For me as a police chief, it's very troubling. For me as a citizen of the county, it's very troubling. For myself as a psychologist, it's very troubling," Alexander said. "So on a very number of veins, I find it very and I'm very much concerned because these are young kids that are out there unsupervised that we arrest over and over and over. And we find ourselves re-arresting them and find ourselves sending them back the street sometime before we get back out there."

The chief says there is no timetable on this surge. He describes the effort as "relentless," promising to do everything he can to protect the citizens of DeKalb County.

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