New Weapon in Fighting Crime in Downtown Cleveland

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CLEVELAND– There is a new weapon in the fight against crime in downtown Cleveland.

City leaders held the grand opening for the Downtown Auxiliary Police Base, located inside the Allerton Apartments on E. 13th Street.

“We cannot be everywhere as police officers. And these are people who take their time; they donate to the vision for free. The only thing they’re reimbursed for is mileage. And the idea behind it is they’re in their community supporting the areas,” said Commander Ellis Johnson with the Cleveland Police Department.

The city’s 8th auxiliary base is the first in downtown in 30 years.

With more and more businesses and residential units moving into the downtown area, city leaders want the community to rest assured that it is and will be safe, even if a police cruiser or patrolman is not in sight.

The auxiliary officers are volunteers who live in this community and the city is looking for volunteers to join the force.

During a news conference, Cleveland Police Chief Michael McGrath, Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson and other safety officials said this new base will provide yet another layer of security.

Mayor Jackson added, “They help free up police officers, particularly when there are crowds around, parking, traffic, things like that that really help us do our job.”

But some downtown residents question if the added security is needed.

“We know our neighbors no problem or nothing.  So you already feel safe? Yeah I’m fine. Can’t nobody come in here without an ID, period,” said Tashay Sparks.

A 9th auxiliary base is set to open at 130th and Kinsman in the near future.