MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn announced 16 arrests as part of an operation that was being conducted in the Center Street corridor on Wednesday, July 26th. The operation included the Milwaukee Police Department, FBI, U.S. Marshals, ATF and HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area).
Wednesday's operation focused on high-rate offenders who are engaged in criminal activities that have a specific impact on the Center Street corridor. The offenses of the 16 people taken into custody range from felons in possession of firearms to a wide range of narcotics offenses. Multiple weapons were also seized as part of this operation.
Chief Flynn indicated as of 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, more than 100 law enforcement officers had been deployed in the Center Street corridor. That included 40 Milwaukee police officers, 30 FBI agents and dozens of agents from ATF and the other agencies.
"We're trying to, if you will, liberate the neighborhood, not conquer it. We want to make darn sure that the coppers that are in there are interacting with the community, making lots of neighborhood contacts, developing relationships based on trust," Chief Flynn said.
Chief Flynn also noted three arrests have been made in connection with the July 18th quadruple shooting at 39th and Burleigh. He said MPD is developing information to look for other suspects.
MPD also arrested a 22-year-old burglary suspect for his role in a series of pharmacy burglaries on the city's north side. Attempts were made to secure opioids from those locations.
"It's a multi-tiered approach, proactive street policing, community-based policing and higher order task force policing aimed at networks and individuals," Flynn said.
Chief Flynn said this is an effort that will continue -- hoping to involve the community in curbing crime along Center Street.
He noted MPD's targeted efforts have led to a 28% decrease in non-fatal shootings in 2016 in the area.