For Immediate Release
United States Attorney, Louisiana Attorney General Announce Joint Effort to Increase Violent Crime Prosecutions in Northeast Louisiana
MONROE, La. – United States Attorney David C. Joseph and Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry announced today that a prosecutor with the state Attorney General’s office would be designated as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in an effort to help reduce violent crime in the Monroe area.
The addition of another federal prosecutor in Monroe is in addition to the two violent crime prosecutors that were recently authorized for U.S. Attorney Joseph’s office as part of the Department of Justice’s ongoing effort to increase targeted prosecutions of violent crime through the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program. In the past year, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Louisiana has brought approximately 115 criminal indictments charging more than 200 defendants with firearm and drug related offenses, including felons and drug dealers in possession of firearms. These prosecutions represent approximately three times the number of such cases that have been brought in previous years.
The PSN program is a collaborative effort led by the U.S. Attorney’s Office involving local, state and federal law enforcement. In the Monroe area, participants include the ATF, FBI, DEA, Homeland Security, U.S. Marshals Service, Ouachita Parish District Attorney’s Office, Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Monroe Police Department. The program has been proven to be successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safe for everyone. United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions has made turning the tide of rising violent crime in America a top priority and directed all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to develop a crime reductions strategy involving PSN.
“I want to thank Attorney General Landry for his commitment and assistance to our joint effort to reduce violent crime in Northeast Louisiana,” Joseph stated. ”In the last year, we have substantially increased violent crime arrests and prosecutions in the District, which is clearly making our neighborhoods and communities safer. Given our collaboration with Attorney General Landry’s office and the hard work of our state, local and federal law enforcement partners in Northeast Louisiana, we fully expect that these efforts will reduce violent crime here in Monroe and throughout the area.”
“When I became Attorney General, one of my priorities was to strengthen my office’s working relationship with our federal partners,” Landry said. “I share U.S. Attorney Joseph’s vision to make our communities safer by working together; and we are optimistic that by offering one of our prosecutors to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, prosecutions will be done in a quicker and more efficient manner.”
“The Project Safe Neighborhood initiative is a comprehensive, coordinated, and community-based approach that we use to reduce and deter violent crime,” said ATF New Orleans Special Agent in Charge Dana Nichols. “It is through this collaborative effort that we truly make our communities safer.”
The Western District of Louisiana consists of 42 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes and encompasses two-thirds of the State of Louisiana. This area covers the cities of Alexandria, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe and Shreveport.