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Philadelphia Police Department's strategy to lower crime with Elite Highway Patrol Unit

The strategy to cut down crime in Philly with the police department's Elite Highway Patrol Unit
The strategy to cut down crime in Philly with the police department's Elite Highway Patrol Unit 02:09

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- More Philadelphia police officers are on the streets. It's a strategy that started earlier this year through mobile surge units.

Now, the strategy to cut down on crime is getting a boost through another specialized unit. Welcome to roll call for members of Philadelphia police's Elite Highway Patrol Unit.

"We're really trying to make a visible difference out there," Philly Deputy Commissioner James Kelly said.

Starting Friday night, these officers will help supplement mobile surge teams and district personnel citywide.

Kelly adds they can supplement PPD's ATV details too.

"It's just another way of like doubling down or tripling down I guess on top of the mobile surge units to have a bigger presence out there," he said. "A really visible presence."

The mobile surge units started earlier this year, putting more officers, many of who work in administrative areas, on the streets Friday and Saturday nights to crack down on crime.


While Philadelphia police believe it's been successful so far, there's still room for improvement.

"The community has been extremely supportive of us, and we're focusing, not only on the violence, we're focusing on quality of life issues," Kelly said.

The biggest quality of life issue, PPD said, is ATVs. Kelly estimates nearly 200 have been taken off the street this year.

"We're not gonna let up on this ATV issue," he said. "If anything you're going to see more increased deployment for ATVs."

Highway patrol will remain highly visible in the community as they head out on motorcycles.

"They're going to spend some time in the areas where we have a lot of ATV activity and then they're gonna go out to certain areas where we have the most crime for very visible patrol," Kelly said.

He notes the key here is lowering crime rates and making people feel safe.

"Wherever Highway patrol is at, there's a calming effect out there," Kelly said.

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