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2002 News Releases NJSP Badge



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 30, 2002
SFC Al Della Fave, NJSP Public Information Office
(609) 882-2000 x6514
Sgt. Gerald Lewis, x6516
Sgt. Kevin Rehmann, x6515
Det. Stephen Jones, x6513

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     Newark, N.J. - The Newark City Drug Interdiction and Gang Group, known as Operation D.I.G.G., reviewed the results of the recent initiative and liked what they saw. Over the 70 days during which the operation was active, D.I.G.G. members investigated 222 cases, making 374 arrests for 1332 criminal charges. In addition, the taskforce confiscated $49,730 in narcotics, $49,807 in cash and $9,600 in miscellaneous property. Eight gang members were identified and arrested, and 38 weapons were taken off the streets.

     The Drug Interdiction and Gang Group was a partnership established between the New Jersey State Police and the Newark Police Department to address quality of life and crime issues in parts of the city. State Police Superintendent Joseph J. Santiago and then Acting Newark Police Director Anthony Ambrose announced the partnership on April 18, 2002.

     Commenting on the D.I.G.G. initiative Attorney General David Samson said, "This is the kind of partnership that helps stem the tide of crime and reclaims public spaces for law abiding citizens. I hope to see these efforts modeled throughout every city in the state."

     The partners' critical first step was to reach out to community and faith-based groups as well as political and corporate leaders to obtain the consent and cooperation of the city's citizens.

     "This initiative is based on the concept that police officers and community members can work together in creative ways to solve crime-related problems and reverse neighborhood decay," said Superintendent Santiago. "This is the same plan of shared responsibility that continues to produce dramatic results in Camden."

     The Camden effort has been named the Camden Anti-Crime Partnership, or C.A.P. The coalition includes the New Jersey State Police, Camden City Police Department, Camden County Prosecutor's Office and the Camden County Sheriff's Office along with other state agencies and community groups. The partnership addresses crime and quality of life issues within the city of Camden. Since its inception, the Camden Anti-Crime Partnership has focused on working toward building trust with the community and in particular the city's youth.

     Superintendent Santiago, current Police Director Robert Rankin and Chief Anthony Ambrose were impressed with the speed and efficiency with which D.I.G.G. made the Newark partnership work. Twenty-three State Police personnel were assigned on a full-time basis. Troopers were coupled with officers from the Newark Police Department to work uniformed, undercover and investigative details in problem areas identified through crime trend statistics.

     "We appreciate the assistance of the State Police and commit that the ground we gained through this initiative will not be given back to the gangs and the drug dealers," said Chief Ambrose.

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