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Public vital to putting stop to violent crime

Statistics show most violent crimes reported in the City of Natchez last year were down compared to the previous year.

Exactly why those crimes dropped is nearly anyone’s guess.

Some say we’re simply in a cycle in which the usual bad boys and girls have been incarcerated, and when they’re released, crime will again rise.

Others point to the work of the Natchez Police Department, which for a period of time had developed a reputation of being a bumbling group of Keystone cops.

Federal charges in a brutality case and a high profile bank robbery case, in which defense attorneys pinpointed what they believed was shoddy police, work damaged the department’s reputation.

Natchez Police Chief Danny White, who was hired mid-2012, seems to have the department again moving in the right direction.

But White — or all the police on the force — cannot stop crime without the public’s help.

White points to increased Neighborhood Watch programs as one of the keys to reducing crime.

Another is for citizens to get fed up with crime and simply say, “Enough is enough.”

If enough citizens take that stand, the law-abiding in our community can far outweigh the criminal element. By being willing to stand up for what’s right, call the police and share what you seek, criminals can be brought to justice, but it will take us all pulling in the same direction.