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CMPD chief of police on gun violence, school safety, media relations and more

johnny_jennings.jpg
David Flower
/
City of Charlotte

Overall crime was down 5% in Charlotte in 2021, but the trend did not last.

Compared to this time last year, overall crime is up 4%, according to CMPD in July. Homicides, robberies and burglaries also increased, although reported rapes and aggravated assaults both fell.

The first week of classes for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is underway, and the system has increased security after a record-breaking 30 guns were found on CMS campuses last year.

Body scanners have been installed in many schools and police presence has increased, but some are skeptical of their impact.

CMPD is also beginning a new media relations policy that may reduce transparency. Rather than weekly or biweekly press conferences, they will happen "as needed," according to Chief Jennings. Twitter and preproduced videos will be more utilized for releasing statements.

We sit down with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Johnny Jennings to get his perspective on the latest crime statistics, the prevalence of guns, police and body scanners in schools, a recent op-ed on bail reform and more.

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Johnny Jennings, chief of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department

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Jesse Steinmetz is Producer of Charlotte Talks with Mike Collins. Before joining WFAE in 2019, he was an intern at WNPR in Hartford, Connecticut and hosted a show at Eastern Connecticut State University.