Downtown Tampa View

Tampa awarded more than $1 million to combat violent crime

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The City of Tampa and the Tampa Police Department has been awarded grant funding through the Department of Justice (DOJ) that will play a key role in preventing and reducing violent crime and improving overall community safety.

The City of Tampa was selected for a $1.5 million Community Violence Intervention and Prevention Grant, which will allow Tampa PD to implement programs and expand community partnerships centered around violence intervention. The award is one of many Justice Department grants totaling $100 million to help communities across the U.S. reduce violent crime. The grant is funded in part through the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, legislation signed by President Joe Biden in June.

"The safety of our city cannot rest on enforcement efforts alone," said Police Chief Mary O'Connor. "We need to address the root cause of crime, and investing in an evidence-based approach will hopefully give us a better perspective on how to fix the problem of violence in parts of our community."

Through grant funding, Tampa PD plans to conduct a community violence assessment to include robust data collection and analysis. The effectiveness of the department's crime reduction programs and partnerships will also be studied. Funding will allow the department to work with local community-based, anti-violence organizations to provide services for violence prevention and create additional safe spaces and resources for underserved youth through outlets such as the R.I.C.H. House. Funding will also support reducing the blight in disadvantaged neighborhoods through clean up days and beautification projects.

"I believe this grant will afford our Tampa Police Department the opportunity to be even more proactive in crime prevention and intervention," said Mayor Jane Castor. "Every resident and visitor of Tampa deserves to feel safe and secure, and we do a very good job of providing that service. This $1.5 million in grant funding will allow us to expand our focus on safety, and I applaud the efforts of the Department of Justice to invest in our community and so many others across our country."

Tampa PD was also awarded $550,000 for Connect and Protect, a grant that will be used to integrate professionally trained Intervention Specialists in the 911 call center to create a Crisis Intervention Dispatch Service (CIDS) Program. An additional $382,000 was awarded through the COPS Technology Grant and $148,863 through the Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program. The funding will be used to purchase auditing software, fund TIP411 and support law enforcement crime prevention and education programs.