NEW JERSEY – On Wednesday, mayors of New Jersey’s three largest cities showed just how anxious they are to assist each other to cope with their issues and crimes happening their cities.

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop and Paterson Mayor Joey Torres gathered at a day-long conference at the Rutgers campus in Newark to discuss issues and to find a solution.

The summit drew other elected officials, law enforcement and criminal justice scholars. The main purpose of the trio’s partnership is to stop crime while cutting costs by sharing everything from police manpower to intelligence gathering.

Mayor Fulop said, “One of the things we’re working to do with prosecutors, is shared services, so we can have our detectives working more closely together in a unit. Legally, there are boundaries based on cities and counties that we have to overcome”.

Newark’s Mayor asked a question during the meeting, “Are we saying, on its face, broken windows is wrong?”

Adrian Mapp, the Mayor of Plainfield replied, “I do believe the broken windows theory is something that should be in place. It’s clear if we ignore the small problems, it’s those problems that fester, and become the larger problems”.

Professor David Kennedy, Director of John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s National Network for Safe Communities said, “Every city that thinks of itself as having a violence problem, what they’ve really got is a group and a gang and a set population, that is under half a percent of their city. It makes it easier to deal with the problem”.

Mayor Baraka said, “We have to have a police strategy that’s focused on the 1 percent we keep talking about as opposed to this big net. I think the net is causing trouble for all of us. We throw a big net out and grab as many people as we can get. We start stopping and frisking, we start racial profiling, and that damages the relationship police have with the community”.

In 90 days, the mayors will meet again to discuss details of some plans such as a shared purchase agreement on police body cameras.

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