POSTED: Monday, February 20, 2012 - 7:33pm
UPDATED: Monday, February 20, 2012 - 7:35pm
BATON ROUGE,LA (NBC33) — "We have citizens being held hostage in their own homes and communities by gun toting thugs and drug dealers," says Baton Rouge police chief Dewayne White.
Chief Dewayne White and other law enforement officials joining leaders from the Capitol City to announce a partnership to try and decrease Baton Rouge's crime problem.
"Too many people, too many lives are lost senselessly and too many people are left behind," says White.
One of the ways they want to curb the violence is to start "Operation Ceasefire". It's a program that gives those committing crimes an opportunity to turn their lives around, if they stop breaking the law.
"We will help get them driver's licenses, schooling and even housing to get them back on the right track," says District Attorney Hillar Moore.
District Attorney Hillar Moore and White feel one of the keys to reaching those in need is by working with the Church.
"These ministers are the key to the door to allow us to win that trust. That's why it's so important for us to partner with these ministers in Baton Rouge to begin to win the trust of the African-American community people and without that we'll have litle effect, if any, on the crime and the murder rate," says White.
One of he ministes joining law enforcement is Steve Beckham of the Church of LIfe Baptist Fellowship.
"It's important to collaborate with the faith community because we have great opportunities to pastor some of these men, parents, grandparents, family members and it's all tied in together," says Beckham.
And it's a union the police chief believes will pay off in the long run.
"We stand united to take Baton Rouge back and free our citizens so that they feel safe within their homes and their communities," says White.