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'This Is A Public Health Epidemic': Local Leaders Launch Intense 90-Day Operation To Combat Gun Violence

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - The Miami Police Department is joining forces with other law enforcement and local leaders to target crime hotspots in an effort to bring gun violence to a screeching halt.

"If there aren't cops in those areas, all we're going to find is the casings. We want to catch those crooks as they're leaving the area, stop them, and take them to jail," said Miami Police Chief Art Acevedo.

The 90-day operation will span five Miami neighborhoods including Little Haiti, Model City, Allapattah, Little Havana and Overtown.

The effort will include 130 additional police officers in those areas.

Gun violence is not just a concern in the city limits, but across Miami-Dade County.

"This is a public health epidemic, we all know that it is," said Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava. "It's way beyond anything that we could have imagined."

Miami-Dade Police are searching for whoever shot and killed a mother in Naranja and injured her toddler in broad daylight last week.

Last month, a 3-year-old boy was killed by gunfire while at a birthday party in Northwest Miami-Dade. A 21-year-old was also shot but survived.

"Families on both sides are suffering as is the community and neighborhood where they live," said Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle.

Officials say they need the community's help to tackle this problem and are part of the success of the operation.

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