Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2023, $106,693)
In December 2017, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi (“USAO-SDMS”) launched its Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative in the City of Jackson to fight violent crime. Since that initiative, the USAO-SDMS expanded Project Safe Neighborhoods to cover the cities of Hattiesburg, Meridian, Natchez, Vicksburg, and Gulfport, which are geographically dispersed throughout the District. To comply with DOJ guidance, the USAO-SDMS implemented Project Guardian to include the rural areas throughout the District. These combined PSN initiatives offer a holistic, multi-disciplinary approach to preventing, fighting and reducing violent crime throughout the District. Through these PSN initiatives, the USAO-SDMS is bringing together all levels of law enforcement with our citizens and local communities to combat violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.
Once cases have been sufficiently investigated by our PSN Task Force members, they are presented to the U.S. Attorney’s Office and our local prosecutor partner for joint consideration of prosecution. Federal crimes considered for prosecution include but are not limited to carjackings, business robberies, bank robberies, illegal gun possessions, firearms trafficking, drug distribution, and violent crimes in aid of racketeering. Under these Projects, AUSAs will: (1) have criminals arrested expeditiously; (2) move for detention as appropriate; and (3) avoid plea deals that will put violent criminals back on the street quickly.
Prevention, prosecution, reentry, law enforcement training and public awareness are components of these Projects. The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to every aspect necessary to combat and reduce violent crime throughout the Southern District of Mississippi.
This District is requesting grant funds to further assist our state, local and community partners in our ongoing PSN efforts. This money will be used over one to three year period for proactive law enforcement efforts, prevention, education and intervention measures, training, and gang enforcement and reduction actions. As a benefit to our District, we will ask grantees to share their crime data with us so that we can determine the best enforcement strategies for implementing PSN objectives.