At a summit on public safety on February 3, President Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland announced new efforts to fight violent crime at the local level, reported Jurist. This is part of the administration’s comprehensive strategy to prevent and respond to gun crime, announced in May 2021. Hours after Biden told every US Attorney’s Office in the country to direct funds toward fighting violent crime, Garland announced how the Department of Justice (DOJ) would help its local partners.
Garland spoke on the new federal actions to support this local work. Among these efforts is a national ghost gun enforcement initiative to train prosecutors on bringing charges for unregistered firearms that are assembled at home. The DOJ claims they are also “strengthening…firearms trafficking strike forces” to prevent violent criminals from obtaining firearms through illegal gun pipelines.
The DOJ’s mix of local and federal strategy is “designed to address violent crime from all angles:”
It includes targeted enforcement, data-driven approaches, and programming that reach every aspect of the problem, from the earliest prevention strategies and violence interruption approaches to post-conviction reentry services. The strategy recognizes that we are most successful when we work closely with state, local, Tribal, and territorial counterparts—and when we serve as a force multiplier for their frontline efforts, including with critical grant funding.
The Biden Administration and DOJ’s plan to keep direct actions primarily in the hands of local authorities, who allegedly have a better understanding of their communities, but seek to work cooperatively across local and federal lines. The summit was hosted by New York City mayor Eric Adams at a New York Gun Violence Strategic Partnership meeting, seen as a model of working across jurisdictions to remedy violent crime and gun trafficking.