'See Something, Say Something': Police encourage community to come forward with information

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WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

After years of violent crime in Wichita, community members are saying enough is enough. 

"We can't let gang violence and all these things scare us."

Pastor Roosevelt Deshazer remembers last summer, when a neighborhood near his northeast Wichita church was at the center of a gang violence investigation.

"A lot of bullets was fired and the neighbors and neighborhood community was very upset and nervous," says Deshazer. 

Deshazer says the drive-by shooting was a catalyst for his group to start asking the community more questions. Together, with law enforcement, they went door to door, asking neighbors for any information about the crime. 

"We told them, look, if you know something, if you seen something, say something," says Deshazer.

This year, since we've started working with this group, last summer we did a lot of neighborhood door to door efforts, and since we started that, we've seen a substantial decrease in some of our violent crime," says Chief Gordon Ramsay.

After the success, Deshazer and other groups, like the God Squad and the NAACP came up with a new idea. A tip hotline for violent crimes.

It's called "See Something, Know Something, Say Something. We Care." It's a partnership between the city, police and the community.

"For too long, we have pointed the finger that law enforcement only...We are all accountable for our own safety," says Deshazer. 

They say it's different than Crime Stoppers. 

"This is the community saying, enough is enough, and we don't need money to make sure that we are letting people know what's going on."

The group wants to continue to work with WPD and generate more community involvement.

"We have to build this relationship so that our kids are not scared of the police, that our communities are not scared of the police, that we're coming together," says Deshazer. 

You can call the hotline at 316-519-2282.