Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke and Evansville Police Department Chief Billy Bolin met to discuss a new tool to communicate with the community on Wednesday.
Mayor Winnecke says the rise in shots fired calls in the city needs to be stopped.
Winnecke says new meetings will be held to discuss how crimes in the community can be decreased. He says the meetings will not be a time to vent about grievances, but rather a time for positive input.
EPD has responded to more than 500 shots fired calls this year and more than 30 people have been injured or killed by gun fire.
Winnecke says things haven't escalated so far that the city is in a "downward" spiral.
"We aren't there and don't want to get there," Winnecke says.
Winnecke says when he looks at what is happening in Ferguson, MO it "takes his breath away." He says he hopes Evansville never gets to that point.
Mayor Winnecke says every pastor he has talked to is concerned about stopping the violence in Evansville and says they have a role in curbing crime.
Mayor Winnecke says he also supports the request by the police department for $210,000 for "Shot Spotter" software to identify gun fire in the city. So far this year the Evansville Police Department has taken more than 250 guns off the street.
The first Mayor's Community Conversation will be held Monday, September 15 at the Boys and Girls Club of Evansville from 5:30 to 7 p.m.
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