“The Price We Pay for Growth?” Area Law Enforcement Hoping to Beef Up Numbers to Combat Violent Crime

Many people are wondering if the valley is still safe after all the recent gun violence.
This past Friday alone, there was a West Fargo standoff and a shooting in south Fargo.

In the past few months, gun crime seems to only be growing.

But is gun control something to crack down on?
“I don’t believe that stricter gun regulations in itself is going to be the solution to gun violence,” says West Fargo Police Chief Mike Reitan.

Reitan says the increase in gun violence is related to the growth of our population.

Statistically with more people, there will be more violent crimes.
“The price we pay for development maybe and growth? Which everyone thinks is what we want,” says Gary Hanson of West Fargo.
“I think the one think to focus on is to make the penalty for a crime sufficient that it’s going to deter the people from doing so,” says Reitan.
Scare tactics may be a good angle to work from but law enforcement also hopes to approach the community through awareness.

Educating the public is a program they’re working on.

But for now, maintaining a balance between the population increase and service calls can be overwhelming.
Reitan adds, “This year again, I will be asking the commission for additional officers here in West Fargo.”
As law enforcement looks to beef up in staff, people are looking forward to a safer tomorrow.
“If I can turn a knob or flip a switch, and make things perfect. I’d be the first in line to do it,” says Hanson.
Hanson lives a few blocks away from where the West Fargo standoff happened at the Rodeway Inn.

He’s lived in the area for almost 20 years but believes facing the problem head on and working together to find a solution, is a start.
Hanson explains, “There’s a lot of disbelief that this is happening but it still happens.”
West Fargo Police say they plan to have coordinated educational programs coming in May.

In the meantime, if you see anything suspicious, call the police.

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