Huntsville Police Department’s Anti-Crime Team tackling crime, drug activity

WAFF's Kellie Miller reporting
Published: Jul. 7, 2022 at 7:52 AM CDT|Updated: Jul. 7, 2022 at 8:00 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - As the city of Huntsville grows, local police departments are working to stay ahead of crime and drug activity. According to the Huntsville Police Department, crime in Huntsville ranks well below other cities, and much of that is thanks to the Anti-Crime Team.

Sgt. Karl Kissich, who supervises the Anti-Crime team, said it’s made up of six officers who focus on getting out into the community to reduce street-level crime. He said they analyze data and tips to understand why a specific crime is happening, and how to stop it.

“Over the past years, we’ve had a lot of success with the formation of this team,” Sgt. Kissich said. “This was a specialized unit that was really meant to fill the gap between investigators, and the patrol work and intelligence out there.”

According to the Huntsville Police Department’s 2021 annual report on crime, there were just over 3,000 drug offenses in Huntsville in 2021. Of that total, nearly 85 percent were cleared. Kissich said that’s proof of their commitment to keeping drug dealers off the streets.

Kissich said they also focus closely on building relationships with people in areas where crime has increased. At the end of the day, he said it’s about making sure all areas of the city are taken care of.

Sgt. Kissich said community members have a chance to learn more about his team’s crime-fighting efforts at a public meeting this month. The meeting is being held by the Huntsville Police Citizens Advisory Council.

WAFF's Kellie Miller reporting

Chairman Jonathan Rossow said it’s important for the public to understand how HPD’s Anti-Crime Team works.

“For this particular meeting, we want to highlight the role that they play in the community,” Rossow said. “They are a small team but they are very vital in what they do for all of us.”

Officers will be talking about how they tackle organized crime and drugs in Huntsville. They’ll also explain some ways that community members can help. Rossow said the goal is to build relationships between the police and the community they serve.

“We want to be able to bring the officers together with the citizens in a very constructive, friendly environment, and if people have concerns or questions - this is an opportunity to learn about what the Anti-Crime Team is doing.”

The meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 12 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. It’s happening at the Oakwood University Community Health Action Center.

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