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Fort Wayne Mayor Praises Emergency Services During Annual Public Review

Zach Bernard

Mayor Tom Henry held his annual public safety news conference with Fort Wayne’s police and fire chiefs Wednesday afternoon.

Henry spoke very highly of the work both departments did last year.

“I’ve had the pleasure of traveling through a number of cities in the 14 years I’ve been the mayor of Fort Wayne. And I can tell you there’s no public safety division anywhere that comes close to the dedicated men and women of the police and fire departments.”

The numbers would seem to justify that praise.

Police Chief Steve Reed countered the narrative of major crime waves in big cities across the country, noting that Fort Wayne has been an exception.

He highlighted a 37% decrease in violent crime and retrieval of more than 850 illegally possessed handguns – 39 of which were related to homicides. In total, crime was down 6% in Fort Wayne in 2021.

The police department will begin equipping officers with body cameras this year.

Fire Chief Eric Lahey praised his team for their work throughout the last several years, noting its responses to EMS calls despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zach joined 89.1 WBOI as a reporter and local host for All Things Considered, and hosted Morning Edition for the past few years. In 2022, he was promoted to Content Director.