Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — Officials announced the first law enforcement “impact zone” in Lockport on Friday, promising an all-out effort to uproot the criminal element that lurks in the heart of the city.
The impact zone, an area roughly bounded by Transit, Walnut, Erie and High streets, will be the subject of stepped-up police patrolling, unannounced road blocks and a building code enforcement blitz, Mayor Michael Tucker and Lockport Police Chief Lawrence Eggert said.
The Niagara County Sheriff’s Department and New York State Police will be sending patrol cars into the zone routinely as well, spokesmen for those agencies confirmed at a Friday press conference. The city’s state Legislature representatives will look for funding to help the city purchase video cameras that can be placed at key intersections.
“We have a message for the criminals: We may not be a big city ... but that doesn’t mean we’re going to sit here and take it,” Tucker declared. “We want to know who’s in our city (and) if you’re up to no good, we don’t want you here.”
The declaration follows a spate of unusually violent crimes and police encounters with unstable suspects in the past month or so. Officers have responded to two shootings, one Jan. 3 near Walnut and Washburn Streets and another Dec. 24 on Genesee Street.
On Dec. 31, Eggert himself disarmed a knife-wielding woman who stabbed the man that allegedly tried to kill her 7-year-old daughter in lowertown.
Two weeks ago a routine traffic stop on Cottage Street yielded a woman hiding a large quantity of prescription drug pills, a couple chunks of suspected cocaine — and a large butcher knife in the back seat of her vehicle. The woman, described by the patrol officer as “irate” and “acting strangely,” ate some of the cocaine and had to be medically treated for a possible overdose.