Federal grant to help battle guns and gangs in Shreveport

By Fred Childers - email | bio

CITY, STATE (KSLA) -  Guns and gangs, something the Shreveport narcotics unit encounters often."A lot of times when you get involved with the gang members the guns aren't far behind," says Richard Childers, head of the Shreveport Narcotics Unit.  Gangs and Guns are exactly what the U.S. Attorney's Office has in mind when they disburse the Project Safe Neighborhoods grant. This year it totals $ 115,000."It's designed for any program that contributes to the reduction of gun violence or gang activity," says First Assistant U.S. Attorney, Bill Flanagan. The narcotics unit hopes to once again get a piece of the PSN  grant, to pay for equipment, and overtime. "In the last year we've arrested 60 people specifically on this one grant we're talking about," says Childers.  SPD already has 50,000 dollars for anti- gang activity and will apply for additional funds to continue fighting gang activity on the streets of Shreveport. "We buy computer software stuff, or computers even, but most of it's spent on overtime and that help us be out there a lot longer than we normally would be," says Childers.
  That overtime allows agents to focus on putting together strong drug cases that the U.S. Attorney's Office will prosecute. "What we want to do is be sure the cases we take will have the biggest impact, so we look for the most voilent offenders, the ones with the longest criminal records," says Flanagan. 
    It's not known how much of the $115,000 will be allocated to Shreveport police, but the U.S. Attorney's Office says every dollar will be used to take guns and gangs off the streets.