Controversial anti-crime program to be expanded in Columbus


COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — An anti-crime summer initiative by police will be expanded to a year-round program in Ohio’s capital, where it has drawn criticism from protesters following fatal shootings by officers.

The Columbus Dispatch reports (http://bit.ly/2lqvWxI ) Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther plans to announce changes to the initiative in his State of the City address at the city’s police academy on Thursday.

Protesters have complained the initiative unfairly targets low-income black neighborhoods.

Public Safety Director Ned Pettus says the program will not be used in specific neighborhoods this year. Instead, police will utilize crime statistics to determine which areas should be the focus of the initiative.

The city’s 2017 budget earmarks roughly $750,000 in funding for the program, which has been marred by a 23-year-old man’s fatal shooting by undercover officers last summer.

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Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com

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