Armed violence: the SPVM launches the ARRET project

Armed violence e: the SPVM launches the ARRET project

The fight against armed violence has become the top priority in Montreal following the multiplication of shootings in recent months in the metropolis.

The Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) will soon deploy a “corporate force” of about sixty police officers whose sole mission will be to disrupt the activities of violent criminal groups.

Named ARRET for Action – Repression – Resolution – Commitment – ​​Land, this new SPVM project is due to come into action at the beginning of September.

According to the police department, this new group to fight against armed violence will be made up of 68 police officers with varied expertise and will be deployed throughout Montreal where action against armed violence must be taken.

This new team will have a single mission, namely to disrupt the activities of violent criminal groups by occupying the ground, collecting information and intervening directly with their members, specifies the police force in a press release published on Tuesday.

The patrollers taking part in this project will be entirely released from answering calls to devote themselves to their mission, adds the SPVM.

On August 23, two men were killed in broad daylight by several bullets in busy public places in Montreal about thirty minutes apart.

The SPVM did not However, it has not been specified where these 68 police officers will come from, whether they will be taken from its ranks or whether some will be loaned by other police forces. The Service had not responded to our interview requests at the time of this writing.

The implementation of the ARRET project, which stems from the action plan against armed violence adopted by the SPVM in the fall of 2021, will complement the efforts of the ECLIPSE squad to fight organized crime – created at the end of of the 2000s – which, for its part, received reinforcements on August 26 as part of a temporary increase in its resources to deal with armed violence in Montreal.

For months now, authorities have had to deal with an outbreak of gun violence in Montreal — often in residential neighborhoods or busy public places — that is shaking Montrealers' sense of safety and their trust in police forces. The latter are also struggling to contain this phenomenon, aggravated by the flourishing traffic of illegal firearms in the streets.

Despite the hundreds of millions of additional dollars invested by the City of Montreal and the Legault government in the fight against armed violence, the results are slow in coming. What's more, Mayor Valérie Plante's promises to hire police officers are coming up against the shortage of manpower and the departure of experienced police officers within the SPVM.

The City must also deal with a phenomenon – more insidious this time – of disengagement within the police forces which means that some officers prefer not to intervene in possible criminal situations in order to avoid being filmed and delivered to the people's court of social networks.

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