Lebanon Gets Second Public Housing Officer - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Lebanon Gets Second Public Housing Officer

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LEBANON, Tenn.- The Lebanon City Council has taken a step towards making neighborhoods safer by passing an ordinance to allow to another police officer to join the force.

The officer would be the second hired this year to crack down on crime in public housing developments. After the Council hired one officer to patrol the area, neighbors said they saw a decrease in crime.

"I mean it was wild activity, just drug activities. People just going crazy and shooting, arguing and fighting, but you don't see that anymore since Scooter has been in," said local resident Anita Rutland talking about Lebanon Police Officer Dana Sanderfur's, also known as Scooter around the neighborhood.

In the last six months Rutland has seen a difference in her neighborhood.

"The shootings, the violent crimes have really stopped or have been reduced a whole lot up here," said Officer Sanderfur.

Sanderfur was hired to solely patrol Lebanon's five public housing developments. Historically, police have spent a lot of time in neighborhoods like Upton Heights.

"From 1998 until 2012 about 40 percent of our homicides happened in those pubic housing areas and so that's what really drove this to us trying to do this," said Lebanon Police Chief Scott Bowen.

Earlier in 2012 Police Chief Bowen cut a deal with the housing authority to put an officer full time in public housing. In return the authority agreed to pay the officer's salary and benefits. The crackdown includes evictions and there have been many since the Spring.

Thanks to the positive effects from the addition of Officer Sanderfur to the area, the city council has now chosen to hire another officer to continue to help the area.

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