Mashpee Police Join Forces With Regional Street Crimes Unit
By: Geoff Spillane
This is not the same Cape Cod that people knew 20 or 30 years ago, says Mashpee Police Chief Rodney C. Collins.
With growing concern over the amount of violent crime, illegal narcotics activity, and prevalence of contraband firearms in town, the Mashpee Police Department has officially joined forces with the Barnstable Street Crime Unit.
According to a news release issued yesterday by the Barnstable Police Department, the SCU was created in 2011 in response to multiple shootings, stabbings, and assaults in the downtown Hyannis area. Much of the crime was tied to a small number of individuals. The unit comprised members of the Massachusetts State Police, Barnstable County Sheriff’s Department, and the Yarmouth Police Department.
“The main focus is deterring crimes of violence and gang activity. A stated goal is to suppress ‘open air’ narcotics distribution. Another goal was to address disorderly conduct and acts of vandalism. From May of 2011 to present the SCU has made over 1,000 arrests. Crimes of violence in Barnstable and Yarmouth have dramatically been reduced,” according to the press release.
Mashpee police have now joined that list of cooperating departments. Effective immediately, Mashpee K-9 Police Officer Michael A. Assad will be reporting to duty as a full-time member of the SCU. Chief Collins said that depending on the circumstances of any given day, Mashpee residents may see increased police presence in the form of SCU officers in town.
Chief Collins said that the addition of his department to the SCU represents a multi-jurisdictional effort to identify and curtail specific problems relating to violence.
“If we can pool our resources in order to strategically deploy personnel to produce positive results, then it is a logical approach to policing,” he said, adding that the SCU is aware of some of the root causes of criminal activity in the area, and that many of the players involved in the crimes are familiar faces to law enforcement officials in Barnstable, Yarmouth, and Mashpee.
Chief Collins said that drugs and guns are the common denominators in much of the violent criminal activity, and that the SCU’s involvement and presence in town will help ensure that Mashpee retains more of the feel of a typical Cape Cod community, and not be perceived as a place impacted by the criminal element, causing alarm among residents and visitors.
“We can take comfort in that we remain a relatively safe community. However, there is a growing concern regarding drug trafficking, guns, and the violence relating thereto,” Chief Collins said, noting that all residents need to remember to lock their car and home doors and report any suspicious activity to police to make it more difficult for criminals to operate in the community.
Leave a Reply
In order to comment you need to be logged in.