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Hundreds arrested in Gwinnett County police surge

7:36 AM, Sep 13, 2012   |    comments
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GWINNETT COUNTY -- For weeks, Gwinnett County police have been working hard to send criminals a simple message: We're coming for you.

Wednesday night, more than 30 officers manned a road block on Ronald Reagan Parkway in south Gwinnett County. It comes at the end of a four week "surge" by police, an operation targeting the county's south precinct.

"This whole operation has been in response to an increase in crime we've seen in this precinct," said Gwinnett County Cpl. Jake Smith. "Things like burglaries, robberies -- our more serious or violent felony crimes."

The surge began August 18th as Gwinnett County began flooding high crime areas with an increased police presence. Over four weeks, more than 80 officers from Special Operations and Quality of Life units set up road blocks and patrolled the south precinct, at times doubling and even tripling regular officer numbers.

The south precinct is Gwinnett County's second largest area, covering 116 square miles.

The operation seems to have paid off: Gwinnett County police report a total of 368 arrests -- 65 felonies and 249 misdemeanors.

"The true test is whether we see a reduction in these crimes when they put the stats together in the coming months," Cpl. Smith said. "But we've never done anything quite on this scale, so it's almost a test, and it's been pretty successful so far and maybe something we'll do again in the future."

The surge will end Friday, but Cpl. Smith said some of the added officers will continue to patrol the south precinct.

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