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NYPD hits 25-year high in weekly gun arrests amid spike in shootings

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Posted at 11:44 AM, Sep 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-09 11:51:59-04

NEW YORK CITY — Amid a spike in shootings across New York City, the NYPD said it took more guns off city streets last week than any other week since 1995.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said at his daily press conference Wednesday that NYPD officers made 160 gun arrests last week, the most in a quarter-century.

Chief of Department Terence Monahan tweeted Tuesday that 128 people had been charged in those arrests.

Putting things in perspective, Monahan said cops recovered 87 firearms over the Labor Day weekend alone.

"We set a 25-year high in gun arrests," NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said in multiple interviews Tuesday, the Daily News reported. "It's good that we got them off the streets, but it's bad that people are carrying them," he said.

According to the NYPD, shootings in New York City rose by 166% in August, compared to the same month in 2019.

Speaking to the PIX11 Morning News Wednesday, Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison said he's still concerned with the number of people carrying illegal guns in the city.

"We're doing a lot of work within the detective bureau to identify how the guns are coming from different parts of the country," Harrison said, adding that "gang violence is a problem," when it comes to firearms in New York.

Harrison said that while the anti-crime unit has been disbanded, a lot of those officers were then moved up to the detective squad.

"I think that was a great strategy because these anti-crime cops are the best cops in the police department. They're knowledge of where they're policing is extremely helpful for us to conduct a thorough investigation," he said.

Harrison also spoke on how the NYPD's new rapid-response teams have been on the front lines, engaging with some of the city's problematic areas for gun violence.

"We're not going to stop," the chief asserted. "We're going to continue to grind. to get these guns off the street and continue to find ways to keep the city safe."

Watch Chief Rodney Harrison's full PIX11 interview below:

NYPD chief of detectives talks gun violence in NYC