Gov. Parson announces $1M grant to Urban League for expansion of crime de-escalation program

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ST. LOUIS – Missouri Governor Mike Parson visited St. Louis on Wednesday to announce a $1 million grant for the Urban League of St. Louis in an effort to help de-escalate crime. The money will be used for the expansion of the Serving Our Streets Initiative.

As of Tuesday, there were 191 homicides so far this year in St. Louis. That is more than all of 2018 and close to surpassing 2019.

The governor has focused a lot of attention on fighting violent crime in the city. He even called a special session on the issue this summer.

Gov. Parson says Serving Our Streets utilizes trained urban engagement specialists to build relationships in targeted areas.

The Urban League has four focuses for the initiative: to better support senior citizens; fighting the opioid crisis by implementing on-demand transportation to treatment centers; bolstering de-escalation efforts before situations turn violent; and foster job opportunities and access to resources by hosting job fairs in 75 neighborhood churches.

This initiative will first start in the Clinton-Peabody, Walnut Park, Jeff Vander-Lou, and Baden neighborhoods.

The state also has been working with federal agents on Operation Legend, a program to help crackdown on violent crime.

It launched in St. Louis on August 6 and in Kansas City on July 8. Attorney General William Barr gave an update on the program today in Chicago.

St. Louis, MO:

123 defendants have been charged with federal crimes.

  • 54 defendants have been charged with narcotics-related offenses;
  • 53 defendants have been charged with firearms-related offenses;
  • 16 defendants have been charged with other violent crimes.

Kansas City, MO:

113 defendants have been charged with federal crimes outlined below.

  • 34 defendants have been charged with narcotics-related offenses;
  • 68 defendants have been charged with firearms-related offenses;
  • 11 defendants have been charged with other violent crimes.

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