DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas’ newly sworn-in police chief shared some of the ways he plans to make the city safer on Monday. Chief Eddie Garcia gave members of the city’s Public Safety Committee a glimpse into his plan to reduce rising crime rates.

The briefing came just a day after four people died in gun-related incidents and after a month in which homicide and manslaughter cases were up 13% from the same time last year.

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DPD’s Acting Assistant Chief Teena Schultz said aggravated assaults and homicides continue to be the department’s primary area of concern. She said DPD’s Violent Crime Response team is making progress by focusing on individuals wanted for violent felony offenses and improving response times on critical calls. New police chief Eddie Garcia said he plans to bring in criminologists from San Jose, his former city.

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“We’re going to bring in the doctors and scientists who are going to tell us what they’ve seen work in other areas,” he said. “It’s a long way of saying that I do envision changes, but the changes that you will see will be backed up by empirical data from experts around the country.”

He also said he’ll make tweaks to the department including targeting critical crime areas, disrupting criminal enterprises like drug houses, and long-term focused deterrence. He said he wants to restore hope and help both officers and communities have pride in Dallas’ neighborhoods.
Chief Garcia said he’ll start meeting with the team of criminologists in the coming weeks and will update the full City Council on the Crime Reduction Plan in April.

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Chief Eddie Garcia (credit: Dallas Police Dept.)