Trenton Police Department Unveils Plans for 2024 Summer Task Force

The Summer Initiative has made a triumphant return after a remarkably successful 2023 campaign, setting the stage for an even more impactful 2024. On June 14, 2024, in Trenton, NJ (MERCER), Mayor Reed Gusciora, along with Police Director Steve Wilson, First Assistant Prosecutor Jennifer Downing-Mathis, New Jersey State Police Colonel Patrick Callahan, and a cohort of TPD and NJSP members, unveiled the 2024 Summer Initiative Task Force.

This year, the Task Force will witness a surge in law enforcement presence and resources, bolstered by the support of the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office and NJSP. Introducing innovative strategies like the Criminal Investigation Crime Suppression Units and Arrive Together, the task force is geared towards enhancing proactive measures against criminal activities.

The inception of the Criminal Investigation Crime Suppression Units marks a pivotal milestone in expediting investigations and facilitating real-time arrests. Simultaneously, Arrive Together, a novel program, aims to dispatch certified mental health screeners and crisis specialists to respond to 9-1-1 calls involving behavioral health incidents, underscoring a holistic approach to community safety.

Mayor Gusciora expressed his enthusiasm for the revival of the Summer Initiative Task Force, emphasizing the paramount importance of ensuring a secure and enjoyable summer for the city’s residents, especially the youth. First Assistant Prosecutor Downing-Mathis echoed this sentiment, affirming the Prosecutor’s Office’s unwavering commitment to allocating resources and personnel to support the initiative, underscoring the collective dedication towards fostering a safe environment.

With a resounding success in maintaining shootings under 1,000 last year, the focus for 2024 is to further reduce this number to below 900, spearheaded by the New Jersey State Police U9C operation. Colonel Callahan highlighted the collaborative efforts with federal, state, and local agencies as the driving force behind the significant decline in shooting victims in Trenton and Mercer County, underscoring the collective resolve to sustain this positive trajectory.

In addition to the heightened law enforcement presence, the community can look forward to an array of engaging summer events aimed at fostering community involvement in safe activities. Over 70 events, numerous summer camps including the Junior Public Safety Program and TPD’s Summer Youth Camp, along with the Summer Youth Camps at Sam Naples and the West Ward Recreation Centers, and a robust Summer Food Program with more than 280 employees across 30 sites, signify a multifaceted approach towards community well-being.

Director Wilson emphasized the importance of community engagement beyond traditional policing methods, stressing the significance of collective participation in creating a safer Trenton. As the Summer Initiative unfolds, the city braces itself for a season of unity, safety, and progress, underscoring the unwavering commitment towards a secure and thriving community.

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