MCS: Campus crime down - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

MCS: Campus crime down

Posted: Updated:
Student Engagement Director Ron Pope says Memphis City Schools are safer. Student Engagement Director Ron Pope says Memphis City Schools are safer.

(WMC-TV) - Student Engagement Director Ron Pope says Memphis City Schools are safer.

"We have a 26 percent reduction in all crimes, this time last year to this time this year."

The system started doing what Pope calls a "CompStat," a system that computerizes and compares so-called "hot spot" stats and defuses issues before they escalate into full-blown campus crime.

"We say, 'This is what's going on in this school, in this community,'" he said.

"And we put resources in place - not just suppression, because you're not going to arrest your way out of this one. It's prevention, intervention, counseling."

School safety no longer falls under one department.

"The psychologists, social workers, security, everyone that's involved in schools to support schools" are involved, Pope said.

Simple assaults are down 28 percent.

"In most urban communities, that's the highest category," Pope said. "Because kids fight."

They also scrutinized the reasons students were being transported to Juvenile Hall, driving down arrest numbers this school year.

Now, the number of children being transported from a school to juvenile court has been reduced by half, according to Pope.

"We said, 'For these offenses, we can deal with these in-house. They're 'suspendable' offenses, not necessarily 'arrestable' offenses,'" Pope said.

The New York City Police Department first designed the CompStat model in 1995.

Memphis Police use a similar Blue Crush approach.

"We also communicate with MPD to make sure they know what we know and we know what they know," Pope said.

It's also about listening, he added.

"We want parents to know, we want children to know that they can come to us, they can talk to us and we're going to find a remedy for whatever the situation is."

Copyright 2013 WMC-TV . All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow