Shoreline municipalities are joining forces to help combat the rise in violence. The newly formed task force held a briefing on Tuesday to discuss the long-term benefits and the importance of working together.
Municipal leaders stated that the joint-shooting task force is a "common sense" approach to tackling crime happening in each city and town around the Elm City.
The task force is made up of local, state, and federal officers from New Haven; Meriden; Hamden; Madison; East Haven; Yale University; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; and the state's attorney.
The goal is to cross-check and share information with other police departments in an effort to prevent acts of violence or retaliation and solving cold cases.
"This gives us the resources that local municipalities do not have stand-alone," said New Haven Acting Police Chief Renee Dominguez. "This will allow us to do better, do the job smarter and reduce the amount of time it takes to investigate."
Solving cold cases is one part of the collaboration. The other mission is to investigate non-fatal shootings that may happen in one town or city and potentially reduce any retaliation and simply get shooters off of the street.
"We need to look at those and investigate those as if we're investigating a fatal shooting or homicide," said Acting Chief Dominguez.
The other piece to the puzzle is New Haven's State Attorneys' office - brought in to see that those committing crimes are being held accountable.
"We are interested in the quality of the investigations because the quality of investigations leads to quality of prosecutors," said Patrick Griffin, New Haven State Attorney.
As a way to help combat the violence in the summer, municipal leaders are planning to roll out additional resources to help bridge the gap between the community and police. For example, New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker mentioned that the city is looking to increase police walking beats, add summer youth programs and street outreach, workers.
"We are here if people that are thinking about engaging in violence want to choose another path to help support a better life," said Elicker.
Other municipal leaders believe the collaboration will lead to a more united community.
"With our state partners, our federal partners, and our community partners, we will help quell this violence," said Meriden's Mayor Kevin Scarpati.
According to New Haven's acting police chief, the collaboration has already led to some arrest in a non-fatal shooting. The task force also hopes the partnership will increase the solvability rates in cases.