St. Louis police car

(KMOX/Brad Choat)

Police Chief Announces Focus of Summer Crime Fighting

June 04, 2018 - 8:51 am

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - The St. Louis police chief unveils his plans to fight crime in the hot summer months ahead. 

Chief John Hayden says where there's drug dealers there's guns and where there's guns there's murders.

 We’re going to focus on open-air drug markets. I think that we’ve seen a correlation between high violent crime and drug activity, so inside of the rectangle as well as throughout the city we’ll be focusing on open drug sales,” he says.

Hayden says with the exception of the recent shooting death at Ballpark Village, crime downtown has been relatively low.  Citywide, Hayden says violent crime is down ten-percent from a year ago, and down 16 percent in a notorious section of north St. Louis he calls "Hayden's Rectangle."

Hayden's Rectangle is an area of north St. Louis where most of the murders took place last year. So far this year, some 70 people have been killed in the city; about 30 of those were drug-related. Last summer, the chief says the murder rate spiked during the summer months with a string of multiple killings.