Increased Austin officer presence downtown will continue for the next 45 days

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) – The Austin Police Department’s recent efforts to crack down on violent crime downtown will continue for the next month and a half, according to APD Chief Brian Manley.

In a memo sent out Friday, Chief Manley said the department has added two portable light trailers and more bike officers to increase visibility and mobility.

This is the second weekend of APD’s initiative following a spike in violent crime within Austin’s entertainment district.

Last weekend, Manley said the department handled more than 600 calls, wrote 90 reports and made 45 arrests.

Drug-related arrests were the most, followed by assault, then public intoxication.

“I was actually out on patrol with the walking beat officers and it was a very different presence of officers,” said Manley at Monday’s city budget proposal.

Alvin Simms, who works at a food truck at Red River Street and Seventh Street, says he’s already seen a difference in one week.

“I’ve been seeing them ride up and down each corner and every corner,” said Simms. “It’s less for us to have to worry about.”

The initiative includes help from APD’s Gang and Air Units.

Manley also said the Department of Public Safety volunteered to assist and will be working traffic Downtown and along I-35.

In the memo, Manley said the department will continue to track data throughout the initiative, to include violent crime trends and gun crimes/seizures.

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