SANFORD, Fla. - A new police substation opened up Monday in downtown Sanford in response to a homicide rate for 2017 that is the most the city has seen in 10 years.
It is part of a partnership between the Sanford Police Department and Central Baptist Church.
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While overall crime numbers down since 2016, with eight homicides so far, 2017 has recorded the worst loss of life due to crime in a decade.
Police hope the new substation on 5th Street and Magnolia Avenue will help reduce violent crime.
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“This will be an area of togetherness for people to come if they have needs or questions. This will be a great opportunity for them,” said the Rev. Alan Brumback of Central Baptist Church.
A year ago, a clergyman was robbed at Iglesia Vida Nueva Church, which is a half-mile away from the new substation.
It was during a time when police were on high alert for an armed robber downtown, whom they eventually arrested.
Police believe the substation will help them keep a closer watch on the area.
“We wanted to come along as a community partner, giving (police) more space an opportunity to take care of this section of downtown,” said Brumback.
Police said they will still be focused on the entire city.
Numbers from the department show there were more than 2,600 crime offenses this year, which is down 600 from last year.
Burglaries, car break-ins and shoplifting remain the highest reported issues.
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