SAN JOSE (KCBS)— Officials with the U.S. Justice Department are paying a visit to San Jose this week to see for themselves how the city’s anti-gang programs are working. The visit comes as city officials say gang violence is trending downward.
So far there have been seven gang-related homicides this year in San Jose, compared to 10 for all of last year, and 18 and 19 the previous two years.
Mayor Chuck Reed said they’ve been lucky, but police have also been working hard.
“They’ve put in a lot of overtime. They’ve been creative in how they deploy their resources and they’ve engaged in our community-based organizations through the Mayor’s Gang Prevention Task Force to have a great decline in the gang violence,” he said.
Federal officials stopped by a meeting of the gang prevention task force Friday where various stake holders talk about gang issues.
“It’s not necessarily rocket science, but a lot of people don’t understand is how important it is that you bring all those stakeholders together,” said Theron Pride, a senior advisor at the DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs.
He said violent crime continues to be on the decline nationally as well.
“We’ve seen national numbers. We’ve really seen things continue to go on a downward trend [with] really only a recent spike in things. Overall as a country, we’re doing well,” he said.
San Jose is one of six original cities that partake in the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention.