Members of the city’s Crime and Violence Committee discussed new initiatives to combat crime in Zanesville.
Zanesville Police Chief Eric Lambes reported that 4 new officers are in the hiring process for the city, and told committee members that plans to re-open part of the City Jail are underway.
According to Lambes the backlog of prisoners waiting to serve jail sentences is close to 150, and re-opening the second floor of the jail will be a deterrent to those who commit crime.
"It will let us house those prisoners that we are currently prosecuting that need to go to jail. That will help to deter crime, and if we can’t put them in jail, then it’s not a very good deterrent," said Lambes.
Lambes told WHIZ News after the meeting that keeping communication open between city officials and the community is important step in working to solve problems.
"We want to get communication from the administration down to the employees, we want to get communication from the administration out to the citizens, and we want that communication to be returned So the more we communicate, the more we can really identify the issues, and address those issues, and see if we can solve some problems," added Lambes.
Addressing major problems such as prostitution, drug activity and littering is something Mayor Jeff Tilton hoped will make the the city a safer place.
"Right now we have some citizens who are afraid to go out of their house at dark, because of what’s happening around our city, and it’s something we’re working on every day to make it better, so that the citizens can get out of their houses and not be afraid," said Tilton.
Code Enforcement Supervisor Tim Smith also addressed concerns regarding vacant housing.
Smith is looking for the public to step up and report any suspicious activity to police.