Special to the Record
A group of local police chiefs and city and town leaders led by Chelsea Chief Bryan Kyes have banded together to increase the value of their law enforcement efforts.
In a scenario that seeks to give police more tools to attack crime in their various communities – which are contiguous – the chiefs of police of Chelsea, Everett, Revere, Malden, Saugus and Winthrop have decided to join forces for a wider and better use of their collective strength.
The Chiefs of Police of Chelsea, Everett, Revere, Malden Saugus and Winthrop as well as the City and Town Managers and the Mayors of these communities have met over the past year discussing various strategies and innovations aimed at addressing local and regionalized crime issues. The six (6) law enforcement agencies listed above make up approximately 500 Police Officers and serve a population of over 250,000 residents.
The aforementioned members of this urban-based strategic working group came to the consensus that the most serious crimes and the most serious offenders are not confined by local jurisdictional boundaries but are in fact regional in nature. Further, it is believed that 75-90% of the violent crimes committed in these communities in recent years have but one common denominator or recurring theme – drugs.
“Where there are drugs there are usually guns which often lead to violent crime resulting in serious bodily injury including death. If we are going to have a significant impact in reducing this continuing violence, as well related property crime issues, it is imperative that we enhance our existing partnerships with neighboring local police departments and empower of our respective Police Officers to be able to effectively reduce drug and gang related crime,” said Chief Kyes.
In order to address these regionalized crime issues including drug trafficking and gang violence the Police Chiefs and Municipal Leaders wanted to give the Police Officers yet another tool to enhance ongoing collaborative efforts and regional partnerships.
“It’s terrific the way that our various municipal departments continue to work together with a singular purpose in mind: making our communities safer. We should and are encouraging more collaboration like this, am I’m pleased to continue to commit Chelsea to it” stated Chelsea City Manager Jay Ash.
As a result, the six departments have executed a Memorandum of Understanding, which shall become effective on March 30th, that constitutes an agreement by and between the Police Departments to establish a strategic working partnership to address certain public safety concerns including, but not limited to, combating violent street gangs and associations as well as infiltrating sophisticated drug distribution operations on a Regionalized Task Force basis.
In order to address these serious regionalized public safety concerns the aforementioned Police Chiefs and Municipal Leaders have agreed to have approximately seventy (70) Police Officers (Detectives, Gang Unit Members, Narcotics and Vice Officers, and K-9 Handlers) from each signatory department cross-sworn as Special Police Officers conferred with full powers of arrest for all crimes including misdemeanors in each listed community.
The Parties to the agreement recognize that in certain situations the ability of police officers to exercise sworn police powers outside of the territorial limits of their respective municipality where such officers are legally employed may be both necessary and proper in order to preserve and protect the lives, safety and property of the public of each participating community.
Notwithstanding the absence of a specific statutory source for the appointment of Special Police Officers within the cities and towns of this Commonwealth, the legitimacy of Special Police Officer appointments has been expressly and implicitly acknowledged and sanctioned in numerous statutes and judicial decisions