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Davenport Police Recieve $700,000 to Curb Rising Gun Violence

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Shots-fired reports are up 46% from last year. Non-fatal shootings are up 63%. To help deal with rising cases of gun violence in the Quad Cities, the Justice Department has awarded $700,000 to the Davenport Police Department. 

Police Chief Paul Sikorski plans to use some of that money to hire data analysts. 

"This is actually moving us into the future of policing. These will be two civilian positions, not sworn police officers, but honestly, they're going to be people who can do a heck of a lot more with data than me. And so, we're really excited about this. This is something that we're going to recruit and specifically hire for this specific job, not try to turn somebody else into an expert on this."

Sikorski says police can't reduce gun violence on their own. That's why the Davenport Police Department is also launching a program that will allow citizens to register their private security cameras with the department. 

"This isn't a way for Big Brother Paul to watch our neighborhoods through your cameras. Absolutely not; we won't have access to do that. We'll have a database that will let me know that you have a camera at your business, and if we have something that happens around that, we'll be able to call you and say, 'Hey, can we meet with you to check video between this time frame on this date.'" 

So far, Davenport police have seized 266 guns in this year alone. 

Marianna Bacallao is WVIK Quad Cities NPR's 2020-2021 Fellowship Host/Reporter. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Mercer University's Center for Collaborative Journalism and served as Editor-in-Chief for the student newspaper, The Cluster.
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