Thomas wants to end ward crime wave

Published 9:47 pm Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Selma City Councilwoman Jannie Thomas has grown tired of the violence in her Ward 7 District.

Thomas held a Ward 7 meeting on Wednesday at Ward Chapel AME Church to air out those issues.

Attending the two-hour meeting were Selma Mayor Darrio Melton, Selma Chief of Police Spencer Collier, City Council President Corey Bowie and Selma police officer Marquis Neely.

The 30 residents attended the session and aired out their complaints about the endless shootings in the neighborhood.

Thomas got the meeting underway, urging both Melton and Collier to help improve things in her Ward. She asked for more patrol in the Ward to reduce the violence.

“We’re tired and too old to be hearing 96 rounds at night,” Thomas said. “We want to go to bed at night and not hear gunshots.”

Melton praised Thomas’ dedication to her district.

“Jannie Thomas is one of the hardest working Council members,” Melton said. “I appreciate what she does for the Ward.”

Collier said he and Thomas often talk, specifically about the numerous shootings and other issues Ward 7 deals with.

“Your Ward representative contacts me more than any other Council member,” Collier said. “It’s not a bad thing. It’s good that she can reach out to me and have that dialogue.”

Several Ward 7 residents questioned Collier about the police department’s handling of solving crimes.

“One homicide in Selma is one too many,” Collier said. “We’ve had six homicides and solved five of them. But one homicide is one too many. Zero is the only number I find acceptable.”

Collier also encouraged the citizens to do their parts to help stop neighborhood crime. He gave out his cell number.

“We need to have better dialogue,” Collier said. “If you can’t reach me, leave a text message. We can fix it, but we need better communication.”

Collier plans to have discussions with Melton and the Selma City Council about upgrading the department.  More police officers, new technology and new squad cars sit on the list for improvements.