WATCH: Brevard Sheriff Wayne Ivey Announces Task Force to Combat Youth Gun Violence and Gang Activity
By Space Coast Daily // June 25, 2020
Sheriff's Office will launch task force in conjunction with Brevard municipal police departments
WATCH: Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey announced during a recent press conference that the Sheriff’s Office will launch a task force in conjunction with Brevard municipal police departments focused on combating youth gun violence, gang activity and drug dealing.
BREVARD COUNTY • VIERA, FLORIDA – Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey announced during a recent press conference that the Sheriff’s Office will launch a task force in conjunction with Brevard municipal police departments focused on combating youth gun violence, gang activity and drug dealing.
Joining Sheriff Ivey during the press conference were police officials from Brevard County city police departments, as well as State Attorney Phil Archer.
Titusville Police Chief John Lau shared images of several recent gun seizures and Archer discussed details of recent fatal shootings in Brevard.
“Youthful gun violence, the things that are impacting those that are 19, 18, 16 years old, taking lives way too young, taking them from their families, taking them from our community, as you guys are aware just here recently,” said Sheriff Ivey.
“In Merritt Island, we had a young man from Cocoa that was shot and killed trying to collect a ten-dollar gambling debt. Rockledge just had two youths shot at a graduation party.”
Sheriff Ivey then shared alarming numbers that area police departments are also dealing with, citing that the Melbourne Police Department has responded to 94 calls for shots fired so far this year.
“Our agency has about the same ratio,” said Sheriff Ivey. We are all dealing with the same thing, and that is gun violence. That is violence that erupts from drugs and violence that erupts from gangs.”
Sheriff Ivey said Brevard County law enforcement agencies have collectively decided to assemble a task force that is going to work to combat youth violence and the taking of lives of youth here in Brevard County.
“I can tell you that as we have talked, this is a very troubling time that we are in with losing young men that are being involved in drug rip-offs and gang violence,” said Sheriff Ivey.
“The volume of guns that we are seeing out on the street, all of those things are collectively causing us to come together and say we’re going to put in the resources to try and go after this. The task force will take a multipronged approach and I make no bones about it, that approach is going to go and identify those that have the guns, those that are committing the violence. We’re going to prosecute them to the absolute extent the law allows.
“And we are going to make sure that those that are not involved, those that are just trying to live everyday great lives, have the ability to do so.”
Titusville Police Chief John Lau emphasized the frustration of law enforcement officials over the current gun and gang violence as he held up images of recently seized firearms.
“This is the type of firepower that we’re up against,” said Chief Lau as he held up the images. “The gun violence has to stop.”
State Attorney Phil Archer said he would be enacting “Operation Ceasefire” and assign gun violence cases to his most experienced attorneys, who will do all the intake on these cases that are identified through this task force to make sure these cases are filed.
“We must stop firearm violence,” said Archer.
Sheriff Ivey said there would be a major focus on building his already extensive community outreach programs.
“The second part of that approach is going to be to identify the bad players, to identify those that are responsible for the gangs, to identify those that are getting the younger youth involved or the younger population involved in drugs,” said Sheriff Ivey.
“If we identify a person that’s got guns, that’s doing the drugs, we are going to wake up with them in the morning and we are going to put them to bed at night. And if they commit a crime in between those two times, the Game Over Task Force is going to put them in jail.”
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