MEMPHIS, Tenn. — There was a meeting of the minds Thursday between top leaders in Memphis and Shelby County as District Attorney Steve Mulroy held an all-day summit on public safety.
“We all have recognized that we have a serious crime problem. We have a crime crisis right now, and it requires an all-hands-on-deck approach to tackle the problem,” Mulroy said.
Inside the room were leaders from the city, county, state, and federal government, including Chief CJ Davis, Memphis Mayor Jim Strickland, Sheriff Floyd Bonner, and Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris.
“It was a really robust conversation, lots of different voices were heard today. The right level of tension with the right spirit of collaboration was also present,” Harris said.
Neither the public nor the media were invited to this conversation, but District Attorney Steve Mulroy says that was intentional to allow for an honest and open conversation.
“One of the reasons we decided to have the summit not be open to the public was so there could be a frank and candid exchange of views,” Mulroy said.
Many hope the exchange will help stop violent crime in the city.
Memphis Police have reported 222 murders and 267 homicides with four months left in the year, compared to 158 murders and 191 homicides in this same timeframe in 2022.
“How do you address the social causes of this, such as poverty and the things that our kids are suffering and our younger people are suffering through? We didn’t really move the needle there, but we’re looking at where we can move with this as we go forward,” said Councilman Dr. Jeff Warren.
We’re told the group discussed crime prevention, accountability in the criminal justice system, possible legislation targeting assaults, and juvenile crime.
“Forty percent of our car thefts though are juveniles, so while 10 percent of our crime may be juveniles, we still have a juvenile problem with car thefts,” Warren said.
Mulroy said the group will slowly implement programs and hopefully start seeing results in the next 6 to 18 months.