DENTON, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) - The Denton Police Department announced Thursday, April 29, it has removed 156 firearms from the streets since October 2020, in an effort to "address the increase in violent crime involving firearms in our city."
The department explained in a news release, "The initiative used an evidence-based, data-driven approach to proactively deploy detectives in areas where the use of firearms is being used in the commission of criminal offenses. In the past six months, the special operations detectives that worked the initiative were tasked with locating and seizing firearms, particularly those that are stolen, illegally possessed by felons, or used in the commission of violent crimes. Patrol officers were also urged to continue meticulously reporting gun-related offenses, and to seize weapons used during violent offenses."
In addition to seizing the firearms, police said, "It is also believed that several other illegal activities were disrupted due to the efforts of the gun violence task force."
One example of an immediate impact on criminal behavior police said happened April 16, when a detective responded to a call for service in the 4200 block of I-35.
The caller reported smelling the odor of marijuana coming from this location.
Upon arrival, the detective saw a man leave the area carrying a backpack that had a large handgun visibly protruding from it.
The detective quickly detained the male and began an investigation after also seeing several paraphernalia items in plain view at this location.
A warrant was obtained, and this contact ultimately led to the seizure of the following:
· 11 firearms (5 rifles, 1 revolver and 5 semi-automatic handguns)
· 1 stolen firearm
· Multiple extended gun magazines
· Large amounts of ammunition
· 40 individual doses of LSD
· 55 tabs of MDMA ecstasy
· 85 Xanax pills
· 77.5 grams of promethazine with codeine
· 5.675 pounds of marijuana
· $1,355 in cash
The suspect, later identified as 19-year-old Xavier Aguirre, was arrested on seven felony charges, and one outstanding Denton County Sheriff's Office warrant.
Denton Police said it will continue to "diligently investigate all gun crimes within the city."
To report suspected violent or suspicious activity, citizens can call 940-349-8181, or 911 in an emergency.
"Keeping our community safe and livable, by working to significantly decrease the number of shootings, aggravated assaults, and other gun crime in the City of Denton, is the primary goal of this proactive initiative. We will work with our state and federal partners to hold accountable those who look to commit crime in our city, especially those using firearms," the department said.
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