LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville’s two top federal law enforcement officials went to UofL’s emergency room Tuesday.
They weren’t there to received care; they were looking for new partners in the fight against Louisville’s gun violence.
U.S. Attorney Russell Coleman and FBI Special Agent in Charge (SIC) James “Robert” Brown toured trauma facilities seeking information.
“We won’t arrest our way out of this ultimately,” Coleman said. “It’s going to require collaboration across multiple sectors. This is another example of reaching out, trying to build those relationships.”
The tour comes at a time when budget cuts and attrition are leading to fewer LMPD officers on the streets.
SIC Brown said he talks to LMPD daily.
“They are a strong partner,” Brown said. “I can’t really speak to resource issues. We all have budgetary resource issue restraints. I do think that they are making wise decisions with the limited resources that they have.”
Brown said the FBI has doubled the number of agents working in West Louisville. Coleman said federal gun prosecutions in 2018 were up 60 percent.
But Louisville’s five-year spike in gun violence shows no end in sight.
“It went from an every other day or every third day occurrence to an everyday occurrence,” UofL trauma surgeon Dr. Keith Miller said. “The volume has been the biggest shift over that time period.”
At the time of the tour, 254 people had been shot so far in Louisville in 2019. Sixty-six had died.