Miyares Announces Crime Reductions in Ceasefire Cities, Yet Roanoke Lags Behind

Attorney General Jason Miyares has announced new trends and reductions in crime in Virginia’s highest crime cities, targeted by Operation Ceasefire, during a press conference at the Slover Library in Norfolk. The Attorney General was joined by Speaker Don Scott and multiple other law enforcement and public safety leaders at the announcement.

Operation Ceasefire is a proven approach to address gun violence through prosecution and prevention, as well as promoting group violence intervention strategies and working with local communities to reduce and prevent violent crime.

The Ceasefire Cities include Roanoke, Richmond, Petersburg, Norfolk, Hampton, Newport News, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Emporia, Lynchburg, Martinsville, Danville, and Hopewell.

To date, Operation Ceasefire has prosecuted 155 cases, resulting in 106 convictions with 41 pending trials. The impact in the communities is noticeable.

The goal of Operation Ceasefire was to decrease homicides in Virginia by 10%. After only a year of implementation, Virginia has a 17% decrease in murders, 10% decrease in rapes and a 3% decrease in robberies.

In 2023, 12 of the 13 Ceasefire Cities saw reductions in crime, and nine saw an overall reduction in violent crime. The cities also saw 225 fewer violent crimes in 2023 than in 2022.

The City of Hopewell had the largest reduction, with a 33% reduction in violent crime. Other significant decreases included Norfolk with 26% drop in violent crime and a 31% decrease in murders, and Portsmouth had an 8% decrease in violent crime and 17% decrease in murder. Petersburg and Richmond had a 17% and 7% decrease in violent crime respectively. Roanoke had a 5% drop in violent crime overall while Murders and Nonnegligent Manslaughter increased by 56%.

The following law enforcement leaders joined Attorney General Miyares and Speaker Scott at today’s press conference: Virginia State Police Chief Colonel Gary Settle, Newport News Commonwealth’s Attorney Howard Gwynn, Hampton Commonwealth’s Attorney Anton Bell, Norfolk Police Chief Mark Talbot, Newport News Police Chief Steve Drew, Hampton Police Chief Jimmie Wideman, Chesapeake Police Chief Mark Solesky, Lynchburg Police Chief Ryan Zuidema, and Martinsville Police Chief Rob Fincher.

More information on individual Ceasefire Cities is available HERE.

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