Yakima SWAT officers determined to curb violence with gang emphasis patrol

Yakima SWAT officers determined to curb violence with gang emphasis patrol

Lieutenant Shawn Boyle with Yakima police wants to protect the community

“To try and reduce the crime within the city,” said Boyle.

He and many others are concerned.

As of June first, the tally in Yakima stands at nine homicides and more than 20 robberies this year, and although police have only made one homicide related arrest, they said a new tactic will help lower crime.

“We just began proactive policing looking for known gang members or gang associates,” said Boyle.

Yakima SWAT officers and other local agencies- devoting a day, with emphasis on patrol over training.

They targeted people with violent backgrounds and outstanding warrants, arresting 15, 8 with known gang-ties.

A tactic they hope prevents future crime.

“If that’s taking the gang members with outstanding warrants and committing new crimes off the streets, that’s kind of the target of what we’re doing,” said Boyle.

City leaders supporting continuous efforts, but saying there is one problem.

“They are costly, they run in the neighborhood of $5,000 to $7,500 a day,” said city of Yakima spokesperson Randy Beehler.

That’s why city council members will meet with local state legislatures Friday morning to ask for funding.

“Let them know what the situation is here with regards to recent incidents of violence, what our police department has done in response and what our plan is moving forward,” added Beehler.

If the city receives funding, police will maintain targeted patrols.

“We’re going to continue to do that throughout the summer,” said Lt. Shawn Boyle.

Removing danger from the community.

Tomorrow’s meeting starts at 11 a.m. in the city council chambers.

You are welcome to attend, but there will be no time for public comment.