Rochester, New York – The cost of combating violent crime in Monroe County is rising as the city continues to struggle with it.”There’s no price tag for what victims are living through and the murders that happen,” Undersheriff Korey Brown said. “There’s no price tag for that loved one.”
Sheriff’s deputies have been working with Rochester police, which has resulted in record overtime.
County Executive Adam Bello is currently requesting $100,000 from the county Legislature to fund the expenditures.
For residents of Rochester, particularly for those working on the front lines, violent incidents are all too commonplace.
The Rochester Police Department’s Open Data Portal indicates that there have been 258 gunshot incidents and 65 homicides in the city this year.
“We’re staffing two or three shifts a day trying to put extra people into areas where the Rochester Police Department would like us to go to assist them in those areas,” Brown said, adding the amount of overtime being used by deputies has surpassed any other year, costing taxpayers and the city.
“Violent crime and homicides are up 150 percent over the five-year average,” Brown said. “That is going to cause all of our systems in the community to start hemorrhaging. Not only the Sheriff’s Office but the emergency department. You talk to the emergency rooms, they’re overwhelmed.”
Although Brown didn’t have an estimate of how much had been spent this year to date on overtime, he said the Sheriff’s Office needs $100,000 from the county to help with costs.
“Our goal is to have deputies there that can be a few things,” Brown said. “We want them there to be high visibility, so people that are there and can know the police are there and the police are around so we can help assist RPD, especially during their busier times.”
In his 26 years as a police officer, Brown claimed he has never encountered anything like this.
“81 murders last year is unbelievable to me,” Brown said. “I remember in 2008-2009 there was 23 homicides for the whole year and last year there was 81, and this year we’re on par to beat that. I mean, we’re 150 percent over the five-year average. It’s crazy to me that there’s this much violent crime and this many victims.”